AMERICA/BOLIVIA - The Bishops: "overcoming formal democracy and deepening participatory democracy"

Friday, 9 November 2018


Cochabamba (Agenzia Fides) - "For years we have asked to overcome a purely formal democracy and deepen participatory democracy", said the President of the Bolivian Episcopal Conference (CEB), Mgr. Ricardo Centellas, Bishop of Potosi, during the inauguration of the 105th Plenary Assembly of the Bishops of Bolivia, which takes place from 8 to 13 November in the Cardinal Maurer retreat house, in Cochabamba.
The President of the CEB highlighted that the Church cannot remain closed in itself and reaffirmed its purpose to objectively orient people in different historical processes. At this point he referred to the failure of the Hague Court, calling for an educational process to create a culture of meeting, dialogue and respect, which promotes integration, and "does not further encourage confrontation and arrogance as a means to achieve common goals".
Referring to the presidential elections scheduled in Bolivia in October 2019, Mgr. Centellas said: "prematurely, we have entered into an electoral climate, which now has neither a purpose nor an end", and added that this "shows the concern to impose and to support a project of staying in power for power, which denies the path of a real process of change that Bolivia needs".
According to the note sent to Fides, Mgr. Centellas urged to deepen participatory democracy based on the defense of the dignity of every human person, on respect for human rights, taking the common good as the end and criterion for regulating political life. He also warned that "a democracy without these values becomes totalitarianism, visible or hidden, as history demonstrates, and easily becomes a dictatorship and ends up betraying the people".
The Bishops began their Assembly with an analysis of the current situation of the Country, to therefore make a reflection from a pastoral point of view, which will result in a message to the "People of God", issued as usual at the closing of the meeting. (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 09/11/2018)