AMERICA/BRAZIL - “Divine Mercy Sunday must promote the building of a Culture of Mercy as part of the evangelising activity of the Church” says Catholic Bishop of Santo André

Friday, 16 April 2004

Santo André (Fides Service) - “The celebration of Divine Mercy Sunday should promote not only devotion to Divine Mercy but it should also give rise to a new Culture of Mercy of the world ” said Bishop Nelson Westrupp of Santo André in Brazil, in an interview of which a copy was sent to Fides by the National Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies in Brazil Rev. Daniel Lagni. “Devotion to Divine Mercy has flourished in recent years all over the world giving rise to a new impulse of evangelisation which must be carried to the vast fields of culture, old and new” the Bishop said underlining that “the Culture of Mercy must also spread in the direction to overcome the present day mentality with opposes God who is rich in Mercy and tends to separate Him from daily life ”.
With regard to the building and spreading of a Culture of Mercy, Bishop Westrupp said “it must be part of the evangelising activity of the Church, both for New Evangelisation in a new spirit of mission and for its fundamental contents such as the Church’s Social Teaching, because the ‘Dives in Misericordia’ encyclical is considered, partly, a document of Social Doctrine”.
“The Culture of Mercy is not only another name for the Civilisation of Love it is also a means to build that civilisation. Implementing the encyclical ‘Dives in Misericordia’... objectives such as political, economic, social and cultural field must be kept in mind, so that the world, permeated with Mercy may become more human.” The birth of “a new Christian humanism” will be the task of the Culture of Mercy in keeping with the teaching of the Council and the following Magisterium .
“Obviously missionary commitment is the propelling force which must be at the bases of building a Culture of Mercy, so that it can be projected in the direction of peoples and cultures”, the Bishop concluded, recalling that in the diocese of Sao José dos Campos a new church movement is being started to promote a Culture of Mercy .
(S.L.) (Agenzia Fides 16/4/2004; Righe 26; Parole 328)