WASHINGTON (CNS) — The Catholic bishops of Latin America pledged their loyalty to Pope Francis and spoke against the “shameful” way he has been attacked, said the president of the Latin American bishops’ council during an Aug. 26 Mass in Medellin, Colombia.
The group, known as CELAM for its acronym in Spanish, was commemorating the 50th anniversary of a regional meeting of bishops that took place in Medellin in 1968 and drew the Catholic Church in the region closer to the poor of Latin America and to work toward dismantling poverty and its ailments.
The news agency AICA of Argentina reported that Cardinal Ruben Salazar of Bogota, head of CELAM, said that just as the movement focused on the poor that sprang out of Medellin in the late 1960s had once been attacked, now the attacks are focused toward those who embraced it, such as Pope Francis.
“If at that time they attacked the institution, today they attack the person,” Cardinal Salazar said, according to AICA.
The news agency said the comments made during the closing Mass also were later supported in a statement by the humanitarian agency Caritas Latin America, the Archdiocese of Medellin, and the Confederation of Religious in Latin America, known as CLAR. All four groups sponsored the congress marking 50 years since the Second General Assembly of the Bishops’ Conferences of Latin America and the Caribbean in Medellin.
The pope’s ministry has been attacked, as well as the pope as a person, “we could almost say in a shameful way,” said Cardinal Salazar.
When Latin American bishops approved documents expressing their concerns on religious, socioeconomic and political conditions in Latin America and how they were detrimental to the poor back in the 1960s, many, including in the church, attacked them as being political and leftist. But they have maintained over the years that they follow a Gospel that teaches the church to care for the poor because that is what Jesus taught.
In a time to build, CatholicPhilly.com connects people and communities
As society emerges from the loss and separation of the pandemic, CatholicPhilly.com works to strengthen the connections between people, families and communities every day by delivering the news people need to know about the Catholic Church, especially in the Philadelphia region, and the world in which we live.
By your donation in any amount, you join in our mission to inform, form in the Catholic faith and inspire the thousands of readers who visit every month.
Here is how you can help:
- A $100 gift allows us to present award-winning photos of Catholic life in our neighborhoods.
- A $50 gift enables us to cover a news event in a local parish, school or Catholic institution.
- A $20 gift lets us obtain solid faith formation resources that can deepen your spirituality and knowledge of the faith.
- A small, automated monthly donation means you can support us continually and easily.
Won't you consider making a gift today?
Please join in the church's vital mission of communications by offering a gift in whatever amount that you can ― a single gift of $40, $50, $100, or more, or a monthly donation. Your gift will strengthen the fabric of our entire Catholic community.
Make your donation by credit card here:
Or make your donation by check:
222 N. 17th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103