AMERICA/VENEZUELA - “Our Christian conscience demands that we are seeds of new life in society at the service of the individual, the truth, goodness and justice”: final conclusions of 84th Plenary Assembnly of the Venezuelan Bishops Conference

Tuesday, 19 July 2005

Caracas (Fides Service) - “The cause of the truth, freedom, justice, solidarity, reconciliation and peace is an unavoidable task for the Church and for the function to serve humanity which impregnates her evangelising mission. Our Christian conscience demands that we are seeds of new life in society, at the service of the people, the truth, goodness and justice”. The Bishop of Venezuela said this at the beginning of a statement “You will adore and serve the Lord your God”, issued at the end of their 84th plenary assembly.
The document in three chapters - The mission of the Church; The country needs a change of attitude; Wager on life, justice and truth - examines the situation in Venezuela in the light of the Christian message and makes suggestions to help solve certain urgent problems which grip the people .
At this time in the history of Venezuela the Bishops underline the centrality of communion and unity among the members of the Church. For this many realities, values and signs of Christianity must be evoked and boosted in Venezuela of today to illuminate the paths the country must take. The Bishops confirm the Church’s option for a culture of life and peace and rejection of anything which has to do with the culture of death: “We suport all that promotes reconciliation and helps to overcome hatred and division”.
The document denounces polarisation and persisting inner unrest which conditions judgement of social reality, hindering dialogue, harmony and collaboration for the common good. “Our society needs a different climate” say the Bishops stressing the need to “seek together the concrete truth of every day, in the many difficult situations facing the people and the nation”. Recalling in this context that God alone is the master of truth the Bishops reject all moral relativism which sets individual or group interests as the norm for behaviour. They express solidarity with the victims of the different forms of violence which are now daily events, the denounce the scourge of weekend murders, massacres of young soldiers in various military institutions, acts of revenge in city districts, uncontrolled crime, kidnapping…sitautions which cause serious deterioration in society.
The Bishops take a stand for life: “We disciples of Jesus Christ, as many other believers and people of goodwill are called to defend this right from beginning, through development, to natural end”. It is therefore unacceptable that the weakest of human beings, at the moment of conception, should be punished with death the Bishops say and they urge all to collaborate to promote high level education. (RZ) (Agenzia Fides 19/7/2005, righe 35, parole 494)