Presiding at the Te Deum for the 194th anniversary of Cochabamba, Bolivia, Archbishop Tito Solari of Cochabamba warned this week that those who are corrupt do not know God and have not heard His message.
“Corruption is a terrible evil with consequences especially for the poor. And whoever robs those who can’t defend themselves has not known God nor received his message of love,” the archbishop said during the ceremony, which was attended by President Carlos Mesa, several cabinet members and some local officials.
Archbishop Solari recalled that the nature of God is love and those who call themselves disciples or claim to believe in Him should demonstrate it by their actions.
Service, respect, honesty, care for others, are the fruits of the unconditional love of God in people, said the archbishop. “Corruption is the opposite, it is the direct denial of this love, the appropriation of goods that are not our own, it is robbery, and it harms the needy, the poor and those who cannot defend themselves. How sad, what a pity, what harm we cause people because of corruption,” he said.
Likewise, he pointed out that corruption is a cancer whose cure can be found in the love of God and in the change of heart which translates into an education with authentic Christian values, capable of a revolutionizing the old ways of thinking and acting. “This is the only way towards progress in the third millennium, there is no other,” he said.
He also recalled that consumerism, unemployment, the breakdown of the family and other problems have unleashed a climate of insecurity around the world. “By addressing the causes, we can deal with the effects. Insecurity in the world is called terrorism, here it has another name, but the basis of it all is the same, the lack of attention to those most in need,” he pointed out.