Chirac & Kohl
The President of the Republic
Paris, April 28, 2003
Dear Mr. President,
With great interest I have taken note of the project for the foundation of the « EUROPEAN MEETING CENTRE FRANZ STOCK » in LE COUDRAY near CHARTRES.
I am glad about the honor thus bestowed in this way to this apostle of peace.
Your grand plan excellently indicates the approach between FRANCE and GERMANY, for which FRANZ STOCK was its forerunner and symbolic patronizer. I desire that the cooperation between both our countries may be continued in this way and the friendship, which unifies our countries, be strengthened.
For this reason I want to congratulate you for this initiative and to assure you of my support.
In handwriting: greeting you sincerely
Monsieur Nicolas VILLEROY de GALHAU
Dear Mr. Dechant,
to my great joy I heard, that the Franz-Stock-Committee in Arnsberg wants to re-erect again the Camp Chapel in Le Coudray as a place of remembrance. I am emphatically welcoming this intention and wish good luck and success for its realization. Franz Stock is for me one of those grand men of the 20th century. As a German priest he left deep marks during his activity in France. His priestly service rendered to French captives – I am thinking above all about his spiritual assistance for persons convicted to death – shows a venerable humaneness and compassionate manner of living. Whoever would read his diary describing those days will be, like me too, deeply affected emotionally.
After the war he continued his priestly service for German prisoners of war in France. For him it was self-evident, despite of considerable problems with his health, to do his duty. For me and many others, who are aware of his way of life, he belongs to the grand persons of our latest history. He has not written any headlines, but stands enrolled in the book of humanity through his priestly service and kindheartedness.
I very much hope that the projects now planned will emphasize his achievement in life for all future generations. It would be a disgrace, especially also for us Germans, if his work would fall into oblivion.
With kind regards