World Food Prize Ambassador Quinn
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THE ARCHIVE OF AMBASSADOR KENNETH M. QUINN
FROM THE MISSISSIPPI TO THE MEKONG
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1979: The Historic Visit of Pope John Paul II to Living History Farms

4/10/79

Amb. Quinn describes 1979 as “perhaps the most significant year in Iowa’s humanitarian legacy.” Following his successful efforts to rescue the Vietnamese Boat People refugees, Governor Robert Ray prepares to welcome Pope John Paul II to Iowa on October 4. The Governor turns to Amb. Quinn to coordinate the public safety arrangements for the visit. In standing on the hill overlooking the crowd of more than 350,000 persons, Amb. Quinn recalled several aspects of the ceremony with the Holy Father including the inter-faith aspect of the event as well as the prominence of the Vietnamese refugees who took part in the Catholic Mass. The visit would subsequently provide a strong impetus for a further life-saving humanitarian effort by the people of Iowa. 

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