We are pleased to learn that the Diocese of Ogdensburg will soon celebrate the hundredth anniversary of its foundation and we extend our cordial greeting to you, its Bishop, and to all your people.
Anniversaries are occasions for joy, gratitude and resolution. This is particularly true when the anniversary is that of a Christian community. There is joy when we realize that Christ has been brought to his people and lives with them through the constant preaching of his Word and through his sacramental graces. He is present in the Church and his presence is part of the lives of those who have received him. We rejoice that so many generations in your diocese have known this salvific presence of the Savior. "The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us, and we have seen his glory: the glory of an only Son coming from the Father, filled with enduring love" (Io. 1, 14).
The joy of an anniversary manifests itself in gratitude. Thanks are given, first of all, to God. He it is who has sown the seed and given the harvest. To him the fullest measure of thankfulness is due. We recall with admiration those whom God has chosen to be his instruments throughout the years in the building up of his kingdom in your midst-the bishops, priests, religious and laity whose generosity and sacrifices have demonstrated great faith and love. We thank those who are still in the vineyard, those to whom has fallen the task of continuing the work and of bringing it to an even fuller flowering. We are grateful to them for what they have done and for what they will do for Christ in his Church. Finally, an anniversary is a time of resolve. All are urgently called to continue the work of faith, striving with ever greater intensity to make Christ’s presence more effective. His is the work we do; his is the glory that we seek.
We assure you and the entire People of God in Ogdensburg of our prayerful remembrance and, as a sign of our deep affection in Christ, we impart to all of you our special Apostolic Blessing.
From the Vatican, February 10, 1972.