On October 10, 1979, the exiled bishops, Julijonas Steponavičius and Vincentas Sladkevičius, sent the Holy Father the following telegram:

"Most Holy Father:

"Encouraged by filial respect and love, we congratulate Your Holiness on the first anniversary of Your Pontificate and sincerely hope that through you, Holy Father, Christ's Church will be blessed with abundant graces and shine with the mercy of Divine Providence.

"Our nation's believers love and admire Your Holiness. We desire and hope to see Your Holiness visiting our country as a loving Father.

"Using this opportunity, we thank Your Holiness for showing us your paternal concern and humbly ask that you grant us Your Apostolic blessing."