AMERICA - Synod on the Amazon: "To show the closeness of indigenous and Christian values"

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Amazzonia (Agenzia Fides) - "I could not say no, I agreed to contribute with all of my years of experience among the indigenous peoples, in the liturgy, catechesis and inculturated evangelization, as well as contributing to the reflection on indigenous spirituality, from the indigenous theology point of view that I have been carrying out for almost twenty years". This is what Fr. Justino Sarmento Rezende, contacted by Agenzia Fides reported, chosen among the five expert consultants who will help the Pre-Synodal Council to prepare the special Synod of the Bishops on the Amazon in 2019. Mauricio López, Executive Secretary of the Pan-Amazon Ecclesial Network (REPAM), announced the names of the five consultants, selected from a list of over 25 names, specifying that although they are not part of the Council, they will participate in the work meetings with very specific tasks.
Speaking to Fides, Fr. Justino Sarmento Rezende then adds that he also accepted because, having been a priest for 24 years and a religious for 34 years - the first indigenous Salesian priest (see Fides 8/11/2017) - he feels called to "show the closeness of indigenous and Christian values".
"The path we are starting - continues Fr. Sarmento - will be of profound ecclesial experience with other members of the Commission and with the Holy Father, with whom we will meet on April 12 and 13. I think I can learn a lot, contributing at the same time to making the indigenous peoples and the experiences of the missionaries working among these populations known", he concluded, expressing the hope that the Lord "inspires wisdom and may our Amazonian experiences illuminate the experience of other continents and vice versa, so that we learn from others".
The five experts will work with the Pre-Synodal Council will be led by Pope Francis and accompanied in the coordination by Cardinal Baldisseri, Secretary of the Synod of Bishops. "May the God of life guide us and enlighten us in this important task, give us discernment and courage, and know how to be faithful to the voice of Christ incarnate in the peoples and territory of the Amazon", concludes the letter from the Secretary of REPAM. (LG) (Agenzia Fides, 21/02/2018)