The new secretary of the Vatican council for promoting evangelization, Archbishop Octavio Ruiz explained that the Church proclaims the same faith received from Christ 20 centuries ago. The only changes, he added, are the methods for transmitting the Gospel message.
“The Church needs to adapt to modern times. This is not a question of changing her doctrine or what she has preached for 20 centuries. It is the same faith, but we must see how we can reach the people with a language that is understood today, putting the modern media and scientific advances at the service of the Gospel.
“The message must always be understood in its deep reasons and not as a religious stance or ideology,” the archbishop told the Colombian newspaper El Tiempo on May 29.
Archbishop Ruiz said he sees his new mission as one of “helping to awaken the faith in those who have strayed from the Christian life,” preaching “the same Gospel but with new zeal, new methods and expressions, so that it again touches the hearts of people.”
He lamented the spread of a secular mentality throughout the world that “would like to disregard God as if he were no longer necessary in life. Amidst comfort and abundant resources, the faith tends to be put on the back burner.”
Archbishop Ruiz also clarified that a new dicastery created by Pope Benedict XVI at the end of 2010 is not in charge of dealing with cases of sexual abuse.
“That is the responsibility of another dicastery of the Roman Curia. That is a different area dealing with something very delicate in the Church, which is the testimony those of us who receive a vocation must give,” he said.
He acknowledged that the sexual abuse crisis has affected the Church’s credibility, “but at the same time it makes us think of the vast majority of bishops and priests who are fulfilling their duties quietly and responsibly.”
“A crisis always brings change and wakes people up; in this sense, we are indeed in a crisis and if we don’t do something, we are going to lose more of the faithful and our people will not understand the Church any longer. This is a providential moment to get a new perspective,” he said.