Pope and Queen exchange addresses

In probably one of the most bandwidth-intensive moments of the visit, the Holy Father and her Majesty the Queen have exchanged addresses at Holyrood House. Her Majesty recalled the visit of Pope John Paul II and her own four visits to the Vatican. She mentioned the contribution of the Holy See to the dramatic improvement in the situation in Northern Ireland as well as the Church's ministry to the poorest and most deprived, and to education. She united herself with the Holy Father's determination that religion should never become a vehicle of hatred. She said that religion has always been a crucial part of our national identity.

The Holy Father spoke of the saintly monarchs Edward the Confessor and Margaret of Scotland and the way in which faith has been a mighty force or good in your Kingdom. He mentioned William Wilberforce, Livingstone and Florence Nightingale and praised the way in which Britain stood against Nazi Germany. He also encouraged continued reconciliation in Northern Ireland. He encouraged the British media to operate by the values of Cardinal Newman, and, with their wide audience to act with respect, honesty and fair-mindedness.

(Of course, the full texts will be online later. UPDATE - full text of Holy Father's address at the Catholic Herald. UPDATE: both speeches at Papal Visit Speeches & Homilies page)

The live webcast at the Papal Visit website got a bit swamped during hte speeches but they also have a backup webcast which has less traffic. The Herald live blog went down for "technical reasons" - come on guys, you know it was because your site got swamped with visitors - kudos!

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