Buenos Aires (Agenzia Fides) - On May 5, the 107th Plenary Assembly of Bishops of the Episcopal Conference of Argentina, presided by its President, Archbishop of Santa Fe, His Exc. Mgr. José María Arancedo begins in Buenos Aires. All the Bishops of the Country will be present. The topics to be discussed include: sharing and analysis of the pastoral and social reality, reflection on "Evengelii Gaudium", the pastoral care of the family (in view of the extraordinary Synod), preparation of the Bicentennial (2016) with a National Eucharistic Congress in Tucuman.
The Assembly begins its work with a strong concern of the Church for the tremendous growth of drug trafficking in the country. Drugs and increasing poverty are the major problems of the population according to the latest studies and surveys of the Universidad Católica Argentina (UCA).
The celebrations of the month dedicated to the Virgin Mary, patroness of the Archdiocese of Santa Fe under the title of Our Lady of Guadalupe began yesterday and His Exc. Mgr. José María Orangery, asked by reporters about the importance and issues of the Episcopal Assembly, replied: "It will be the slogan of our feast to answer: 'Mother, help us to build a society in peace, without drugs or violence'." Mgr. Arancedo reminded that faith has a social dimension, and stressed: "It is impossible to get used to living with the crime of drugs and with violence, and worse, to being indifferent. Our Lady of Guadalupe obliges us to strive to build a more cohesive society and to continue to follow her example: a missionary commitment for the entire Latin American Church".
Last year the Assembly of Bishops had already asked the government to give priority to the serious social problem of drugs, calling it "the tragedy that destroys families". The Assembly this year will end on Saturday 10 May, a few days before the celebrations for independence on May 25. (CE) (Agenzia Fides 05/05/2014)