Government of the Federated States of Micronesia

FSM welcomes Archbishop Balvo of Holy See

Palikir, POHNPEI (FSM Information Service): February 10, 2006 - Archbishop Charles D. Balvo presented his credentials to President Joseph J. Urusemal as the Apostolic Nuncio of the Holy See to the Federated States of Micronesia.

The Presentation of Credentials was held on January 27 2006, in the President's Conference room in Palikir where Archibishop Balvo expressed best wishes for the well being of the President and the people of FSM.

Archbishop Balvo said his work in the FSM would be at the service of the Church and assisted by those entrusted with "the responsibility of guiding the destiny of this nation." A nation he said "cherishes the values of peace and freedom, and that unites in its states, people of various linguistic, cultural and religious traditions."

Such cultural diversity is what the Archbishop says encourages the Catholic Church to be "directly engaged in the great causes for which the men and women of our age struggle and hope."

The Archbishop noted that one of the struggles facing humanity today is the challenge of freedom. Referencing the various forms of freedom, Archbishop Balvo noted that the freedom of States is also sacred in that they [States] need to be free above all so that they can carry out 'adequately their fundamental duty of safeguarding both the life and the freedom of their citizens and all their legitimate manifestations.'

The FSM had established diplomatic relations with the Holy See in January of 1994. Archbishop Balvo is the pontifical representative to the FSM and other assigned Pacific nations.

The expression Holy See refers to the supreme Authority of the Church, and thus the Pope as Bishop of Rome and head of the College of Bishops. Defines therefore the Central Government of the Catholic Church.

As such, the Holy See is an institution which, according to the international laws and customs, has a juridical personality which permits it to sign treaties and to send and receive diplomatic representatives, as juridical equivalent of a state.

For further information on this release, please contact:

FSM Office of the President
Public Information: Press, Radio, Video
P.O Box 34
Palikir Station, Pohnpei, FM 96941
Tel.: (691) 320-2548/2092
Fax.: (691) 320-4356