A collective formed by Catholics in order represent the Catholic Church will participate in the controversial World Social Forum, to be held in Venezuela January 23-29.
The collective is bringing together representatives of various Church ministries throughout Venezuela that seek to respond to the Church’s “challenge to build a more just, humane, fraternal and Christian society, in hopes of achieving the common good and of creating more favorable conditions for the human person and the family,” the collective’s leaders stated.
“The communities, groups, organizations and institutions of the Church should let their voice and the strength of their witness be heard, and above all they should share their experience of years of service to the poor and excluded in order to continue united in their efforts, without forgetting the commitment of Christians to transform this world,” they added.
Although some analysists have warned this year’s World Social Forum could become a propaganda tool for the government of Hugo Chavez, the collective believes its participation is a response to “the need to make our voices and our proposal for a new world based on the Gospel and the social teachings of the Church heard by all.”
“The present-day divorce between the eschatological and the historical, between faith and daily life is a call-to-action for us as Christians and an invitation to proclaim the Good News of the risen Jesus, as one more step in response to the challenges of the beginning of the third millennium in our personal, family, pastoral and community life, in order to reach out to our brothers and sisters on issues that are of importance, such as fundamental human rights in economic social, cultural and environmental matters. We are disciples and missionaries of Jesus, and our witness, together with our mission of evangelization, is carried out by Him, with Him and in Him: The Way, the Truth and the Life, so that our peoples can have life in Him,” the collective stated.