.- Archbishop Carmelo Juan Giaquinta of Resistencia, Argentina, said he is praying “fervently” that the country’s president, Néstor Kirchner, “be who is supposed to be.”
In a recent letter entitled, “Only a Heroic Spirit Can Rebuild a Nation,” the Archbishop said he also prays “that we may be a wise people unafraid to heed the sensible words of those who call us to renew public morality and to rebuild the country.”
He cited Germany as an example, a country which rose out of the ashes of World War II, and he asked what the difference was with Argentina. “Some will say our history is not the same. They are a people who go back thousands of years and have suffered much and finally learned. This is partially true. Because after three wars with France (two of them World Wars), they learned that the road to victory was in the completely opposite direction: no longer war with France, but peace; no longer taking iron and coal from others, but rather sharing their own resources.” He also mentioned the possibility that one important difference might be that “the Germany had leaders willing to make their people face the truth of what happened and the situation that they must face, and therefore they inspired a heroic spirit that the nation needed to rebuild itself. Our leaders have been too concerned with re-election and thus incapable of taking the risk to speak the truth to the people.”
“In these last 50 years,” said Archbishop Giaquinta, “Argentina seems to be like Germany in reverse. They rebuilt themselves out of the greatest destruction ever seen in Europe, with persistent effort, savings, and humility, which is a sign of intelligence, assuming moral responsibility for Nazism and the world war.”
“We, however, have become accustomed to squander and sloth. It has been easy for us to be bullies, even in international politics. And we never accept historical responsibility for the problems we have caused,” he concluded.