After praying the Angelus on Sunday, Pope John Paul II received in the Clementine Hall a group from the Artistic and Cultural Formation Center, which works with poor and underprivileged youths.
After watching a brief break-dance performance, the Pontiff recalled that “in man, the artist, the image of the Creator is reflected.” “I say this also so that all artists present here are conscious that this reflection of God implies a great responsibility,” he added.
“Above all,” he continued, “responsibility for one's self and for one's own talent,” received by God, must “not be wasted but developed” in order “to serve one's neighbor and society with it.”
The Pope said that “the second dimension of the responsibility of artists” is “the commitment to shape the spirit of societies and peoples.” “In this perspective,” he affirmed, “the third dimension of responsibility is discovered: Artists are responsible not only for the aesthetic dimension of the world and of life but also of the moral dimension.”
“If artists are not guided by good in creativity, or even worse, are lead toward evil, they are not worthy of the title of artist,” he concluded.