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Pope Paul VI’s unedited talk on St. Thomas Aquinas

Catholic World News - June 08, 2011

Relying on decades-old audio from Vatican Radio, L’Osservatore Romano has published the unedited version of a 1974 speech given by Pope Paul VI in Aquino, the birthplace of St. Thomas Aquinas. A different version had appeared in L’Osservatore Romano days after the speech was delivered.

“If you are really aware of the honor of belonging to Aquino, which gives its name to the greatest theologian in our schools, not only in medieval but also in modern times, try to make a diligent effort in regular and persevering study of religion,” the Pope said, adding:

Honor St. Thomas by studying his thought! The Church, while admitting as legitimate and necessary the knowledge of the new and various forms of religious culture, has not ceased to recommend, also in the recent Council, a preference for the study of the works of St. Thomas. He is such a master that he is still considered relevant today and, in the diffusion of so many false or questionable opinions, providential! Let this exhortation of ours go to our seminaries. our religious houses, and even our universities!

And now speaking from Aquino, we address also the teachers of philosophy and theology, who in Christ’s Church carry out the great mission of transmitting the genuine doctrine of the Church. We look to them with great confidence, with great hope! We beseech them, in Christ's name, to be faithful to the Magisterium that Christ has entrusted to his Church, to be, like St. Thomas, passionate defenders of religious truth in its authentic expression.

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