Caracas (Agenzia Fides) - At the end of the virtual meeting of the Episcopal Commissions, held last week, the Bishops of Venezuela presented their Pastoral Exhortation "On the social, economic, moral and political situation of the country". The document summarizes their concerns about the suffering and injustices that have occurred and that the Church is committed to every day, mainly in providing assistance to those affected.
Faced with the situation in the country, the Venezuelan Episcopate affirms that "both the ruling party and the opposition do not present a project for the country that is able to bring together and convince the majority of the Venezuelan people to live in justice, freedom and peace". They add that Venezuela "invokes a change of attitude in all the political leaders" and quote Pope Francis who in his last encyclical, Fratelli Tutti, says: "We need the best policy at the service of the true common good".
The Bishops of Venezuela once again refer to the parliamentary elections, pointing out that "the electoral event scheduled for next December 6, far from contributing to the democratic solution of the political situation we are experiencing today, tends to worsen it". They claim that "it is immoral to hold elections when people suffer the consequences of the pandemic, lack the minimum conditions necessary for their survival and that there is no transparent rules and verification mechanisms that should characterize an electoral process". In addition to this, they state that the presidential elections have yet to be held, "since those of 2018 were marked by illegitimate conditions, which made the current regime, in the eyes of Venezuela and many nations, a de facto power".
Finally, the Bishops, taking up one of the recent communiques from the Bishops' Conference, remind citizens that a simple abstention is not enough to highlight the illegitimacy of the process and achieve the much desired political change. This is why the various civil, university, trade union, academic, employers and worker organizations, indigenous communities and youth organizations must make joint efforts to restore the nation's democratic rights. (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 19/10/2020)