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Papal Visit records

Identifier: A-01-2009.010

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of original and photocopied materials regarding Pope John Paul II’s visit to South Carolina during his second papal visit to the United States in September 1987.  The majority of these records were retained by Monsignor Thomas R. Duffy, the Vicar General for the Diocese of Charleston at the time.  Records were transferred to the archives and officially accessioned on 29 June 2009.  Materials include original and photocopied administrative records; correspondence; meeting minutes; news releases; transcripts of speeches; newspaper clippings; cassette tape recordings; photographs; film; video cassettes; publications; and ephemera.  This collection is divided into four series; administrative records, photographs, publications, and audio-visual materials. Administrative records include administrative materials, correspondence, various committee meeting minutes; catechesis; one press kit; ephemera; anti-Catholic ephemera; news releases; speeches; newspaper clippings; two (2) Time Magazine articles; and National Council of Catholic Bishops background pieces and communications regarding the logistics and scheduled events of the papal visit to South Carolina. Photographs include photos taken by diocesan personnel and Vatican photographers.  The photos produced by the Vatican are property of the Vatican photographer and cannot be reproduced by the Diocese of Charleston. Publications include works regarding the Pope’s second papal visit to the United States, and one regarding the first papal visit in 1979. Audio-visual materials include three (3) audiocassette recordings of Bishop Unterkoefler’s welcome to Pope John Paul, Unterkoefler’s reflections on the papal visit, and a discussion of experiences and reflections with the adult education program of Our Lady of Peace (Columbia); a Sony high band 1-inch master tape film entitled, “America Prepares for the Pope,” narrated by Charleton Heston; and a series of six (6) BRS 358m videocassettes documenting the papal visit to Columbia, South Carolina, in one hour increments.  Oversized materials consisting of one box include transcriptions of papal speeches, papal visit plan materials, one film reel, and six videocassettes.


  • Created: 1979-1989
  • Other: Majority of material found in 1987
  • Other: Date acquired: 06/29/2009


Conditions Governing Access

Open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

The Diocese of Charleston makes no representation that it is the owner of any copyright or other literary property in the materials contained in its archives. In providing access to or permitting the reproduction of any such materials, the Diocese of Charleston does not assume any responsibility for determining the nature of any rights, ownership or interest therein; nor for obtaining the appropriate permissions to publish or use; nor for determining the nature of any liabilities (for defamation and invasion of privacy) that may arise from any publication or use. This rests entirely with the researcher.

Biographical or Historical Information

John Paul II included The Diocese of Charleston in the second pastoral visit of to the United States, September 10–19, 1987. In ten days the Pope visited the cities of Miami, Columbia, San Antonio, Phoenix, Los Angeles, Monterey, San Francisco, and Detroit. The theme of the second pastoral visit was “Unity in the Work of Service.” The visit to Columbia, South Carolina, was September 11, 1987, where the Pope focused on ecumenical reason, or promoting and fostering Christian unity throughout all Christian denominations. The Diocesan Coordinating Committee for Pope John Paull II's pastoral visit was formed in the fall of 1986. It was broken down into the following sub-committees: General Coordination, Reverend Monsignor Thomas R. Duffy; Liturgy, chaired by the Reverend Timothy J. Watters; Catechesis, the Reverend Robert J. Kelly; Hospitality, under the direction of the Diocesan Council of Catholic Women, Mrs. Harriet M. Condon, President; Transportation, Mr. H. Arthur Brown; Ecumenical Relations, Mrs. Peggy Sookikian; Media, Mr. Paul C. Beach; Security, Monsignor Duffy; and Finance, Reverend Monsignor J. Flemming McManus and Mr. Joseph P. Griffith.

Note written by


4.38 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



Administrative records, photographs, and publications documenting Pope John Paul II's visit to South Carolina.

Arrangement Note

Materials are arranged alphabetically by series, and chronologically at the folder level when applicable.

Source of Acquisition

Received from Msgr. Thomas R. Duffy in June 2009.

Method of Acquisition


Related Materials

Hamburger Papers 1999.005

Processing Information

Processed by Jennifer E. Neal.

Inventory of the Papal Visit records
Jennifer E. Neal
Description rules
Other Unmapped
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Catholic Diocese of Charleston Archives Repository

114 Broad Street
Carriage House
Charleston SC 29401 US