I warmly welcome the very successful State visit of President Michael D Higgins, President of Ireland, to Britain during these days. The enthusiasm and the goodwill which are so evident and gratifying, reflects the maturity, respect and mutual understanding which now characterise the relationship between our two islands.
I rejoice wholeheartedly in the joy and happiness which the new situation has brought, especially to Irish people living in Britain. I am immensely grateful to all those who have worked strenuously and constantly and taken risks to bring about that change. The great fear now is that too many people will conclude that the Irish peace process is now done and dusted – and say, ‘let us move on’. My hope is that our two governments will remain focussed on the outstanding problems and continue to apply the same energy and determination to their resolution as heretofore.
The historic events taking place in London are also the result of a long process of respectful dialogue and patience – I hope they bear the fruits of greater respect on all sides. I hope these positive relations will continue to deepen and improve and serve to promote a fuller healthy normalisation of conditions here in Northern Ireland.
I invite the faithful of our islands to join with me in prayer for the strengthening of the bonds of friendship between our peoples.
- Cardinal Seán Brady is Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland.
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