Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Remember the Philippines?

Earlier this summer, the Pope sent a letter to the bishops of the Philippines, asking/telling them to stay out of the election scandal that had surrounded President Arroyo. This came after a long tradition of the bishops, led by Cardinal Sin, in intervening to ensure that democracy reigned.

But now...

The borrowed French term is déjà vu, although maybe it should be a comparable word in Latin. This with clerics of Mexico’s Roman Catholic Church once again becoming politically active, albeit hush-hush, in ways reminiscent to the involvement of prelates during the run-up years to Mexico’s 1988 presidential election.

In September the Pope made several major statements about Mexico, first expressing concern to an initial group of visiting Mexican bishops about escalating corruption, impunity, narcotics trafficking, organized crime and other challenges. A week later, while accepting the credentials of Mexico’s new ambassador to the Vatican, he amplified on his distress with respect to illegal drugs, crime and violence in Mexico.

Moreover, in a subsequent visit with another delegation of ad limina apostolorum bishops from Mexico, he delved into partisan politics more directly. According to Texcoco Bishop Carlos Aguiar Retes, who is also secretary general of the CEM, Pope Benedict encouraged Mexico’s bishops to “positively” participate in the current electoral process.

Read the complete article Déjà vu politics and the Mexican Catholic Church from MEXIDATA.INFO.

So, all those bishops from Mexico who've been streaming through Italy the last month or so were advised to 'positively' participate in the political process. Mexico certainly has problems, but I'm wondering what is the difference between the Philippines and Mexico when it comes to episcopal involvement in the political process.

I am thinking that the Pope wants clear and direct Church participation, but that he would like to get past the days when Cardinal Sin and his colleagues basically decided if a president had been fairly elected or not.

No comments: