By Vatican News staff writer
Pope Francis on Friday, sent a message to Mr. Edgar Morin on the occasion of his 100th birthday, extending to him best wishes for happiness and health.
Edgar Morin, philosopher and sociologist, was born on 8 July, 1921. He is internationally recognized for his scholarly contributions to diverse fields and for multiple publications.
The message, in the form of a telegram, was sent by Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, on behalf of the Pope. It was read by Archbishop Francesco Follo, the Permanent Observer of the Holy See to UNESCO, the UN’s Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, that organized an online panel discussion in recognition of Morin's influence on culture and society.
UNESCO continues the celebration of Edgar Morin’s 100th birthday with two other events slated for July 8 and 9.
A rich, long life of contribution
In the message, Pope Francis noted that Mr. Morin’s long life, “rich in events and encounters” has allowed him to be a privileged witness “to the profound and rapid changes that our world and our societies have undergone and are still undergoing.”
He has therefore been able “to analyse, with necessary hindsight, the meaning of these changes, to draw out their hopes, and to warn of their risks and dangers.”
An advocate for a better society
Pope Francis pointed out that in the face of the progress of science and technology and the great possibilities they offer to society, Mr. Morin has stressed the need to achieve “moral and intellectual progress in order to avoid disasters.”
Mr. Morin’s awareness of a common destiny of humanity, the Pope said, has held his attention and pushed him to promote “the need for a policy of civilization aimed at putting man at the center and not the power of money.”
Speaking further on the centenarian’s contribution to society, the Pope went on to note that Mr. Morin has actively participated in many works and meetings with countless people from civil and political society “with the aim of promoting cooperation between peoples, building a more just and humane society, and renewing democracy.”
More so, Mr. Morin has stressed “the need to rediscover, among ourselves and in our cities, a spirit of solidarity, conviviality, and fraternity, giving priority to attitudes of welcome and openness,” the Pope said.
Several points of Mr. Morin’s reflections have also echoed Pope Francis’ Social Teaching - a convergence - the Pope recalls, that they shared during their meeting on 27 June 2019. The Holy Father also recognized his enthusiasm and generous offer to participate in the Global Compact on Education which was launched last year.
Pope Francis went on to further acknowledge Mr. Morin’s lifelong efforts in the service of a better world and expressed his wish that God will continue to enlighten him and reveal His fatherhood to him "on the path he still has to travel."
Concluding, the Holy Father imparted his Apostolic Blessing on Mr. Morin, his wife, and all those who are dear to him.