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Sunday, March 26, 2017
Mexico: Bishop voices concern over wave of violence in Culiacan state
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 Bishop Benjamín Jiménez Hernández of Culiacan, sent an urgent message to all priests, religious, and laity in his Diocese, promoting social peace in response to the growing number of armed attacks that have begun since April 30, across the entire State, but especially in Culiacan, and has left behind a great number of deaths and violence. "This most shameful situation," the Bishop said, "is making a fierce intent to rid us of our social and city peace and tranquility. We need to make people aware of the dignity of every human person, his right to live and work in fraternal harmony and live together in an environment of respect and community stability." The [relate shows his concern for the fact that "the culture of violence and death begins to take more ground in our society, as family values begin to deteriorate more and more." In fact, "parents practically give up their important mission of education in the home, pressured by the dominant atmosphere of permissiveness and materialism that undermines the strength of the family." In addition, many educational institutions "have abandoned the promotion of authentic values that form the basis for healthy social co-existence." "In this sense," the Bishop said, "the Church is called to bear witness on all levels to the values of the Gospel, as her unique contribution to the progress of peoples and social peace." With that in mind, as Bishop and Pastor of his diocese, Bishop Benjamin makes an urgent appeal to the entire diocese and society as a whole, "to intensify our confident prayer to God Our Father, as the most important recourse of our faith in the most difficult moments of our historical journey." For this reason, he has declared a series of initiatives to be complete during this month of May, among them, that a Mass be said every day in every Parish for an end to violence and asking for the inestimable gift of peace in our homes and families, and in society. A petition is to be included, as well, in the Prayers of the Faithful, asking for this same intention. He also asked that every day in the Cathedral, during the month of May, that there be a Holy Hour to the Divine Mercy at 3pm and that every Parish organize days of prayer and reparation "that encourage the faithful in values such as life, the dignity of the human person, co-responsibility as citizens, honesty, justice, and peace." Lastly, he asked that in the Catholic schools and in the Diocesan Seminary, "there may be a greater awareness of the Gospel values, with emphasis on the respect of others, order, responsibility, justice, and peace." "We have survived many crises; we will also survive and overcome the present circumstances with the Lord's help," the Bishop concluded. The Archbishop of Mexico City is also concerned by the wave of violence and has made an energetic appeal, "to stop these deplorable outbreak of violence that is a grave threat to Mexico's peace and reveals the breakdown of the social fabric, which is torn in many areas by the powers of corruption and drug-trafficking." The text recognizes the efforts of the State in fighting organized crime and protecting Mexican citizens. "However, they also know that this arduous task will be a lost cause if the various social and political powers do not do their part." With that said, the Archdiocese makes an appeal to "all social powers, mainly the mass media, that they may urgently begin promoting life; educational institutions, that they may ensure a better formation on all levels, promoting values with greater strength; the family, that it may be strengthened as a privileged place where love for one's neighbor and is communicated and lived; the Church herself, that through her own work of evangelization, it may be clear that there is an absolute incompatibility between the living out of the Christian faith and the participation in organized crime." Source: Fides
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