.- Archbishop Hugo Barrantes Urena of San Jose, Costa Rica, told Costa Ricans in his Easter message to embrace the faith without conditions or short-cuts and to defend the life of the unborn against efforts to legalize abortion. The archbishop warned that “based on a relativistic understanding of the Christian faith and a conditional adherence to the Church, some Catholics seek to construct a Christianity and, consequently, a Church to their own liking, unilateral and outside the identity and mission that Jesus Christ has fundamentally given us.”
“We have been witnesses of the emergence of what some call ‘cafeteria Christianity,’ which is nothing more than the intention of having one’s ‘own church,’ constituted according to the dictates of one’s religious understanding,” he noted.
Archbishop Barrantes Urena underscored that the Church is not a “simple human creation” and that Catholics are not free to arbitrarily alter her essence by accepting what they find comfortable and rejecting whatever is challenging and difficult.
The archbishop also pointed to an increasing openness to unions and expression outside of marriage as major difficulties and obstacles for families.
He also decried the abortion mentality which ignores that all human life must be absolutely respected and protected from the moment of conception. “From the first moment of his existence, man’s rights as a person, among which is the inviolable right off all innocent beings to life, must be recognized,” he demanded.
In this sense, the archbishop called on Catholics to “choose a culture of life, which means not only the denouncing of violence and , but also the announcing and cultivating of life as the supreme value desired by God.”
“Imitating the example of St. Paul, I exhort all the faithful of the Archdiocese of San Jose to assume the work of the Gospels, facing the battle of the faith based on the joy of the Resurrection,” he concluded.