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Paraguayan bishops lament Lugo’s betrayal of his vows

.- Various Catholic bishops in Paraguay are lamenting the news that the current President of Paraguay, Fernando Lugo, fathered a child with a 16 year-old girl while he was still a Catholic bishop.

Bishop Mario Melanio Medina lamented that “Fernando Lugo lied to the Catholic Church in fathering a child as a religious.”

Lugo “is not the first nor will he be the last who lied or will lie to the Church. This should serve as a lesson to all priests,” the bishop said.  Although he acknowledged that the decision by the president to admit his actions and acknowledge his son “is a courageous act,” he added that “it is sad that he had a relationship with a woman at a time when he was still a religious.”

Asked if he knew about the relationship, the bishop replied, “There were rumors, but it was never confirmed that there was a relationship between him and the young girl. Now everything has been clarified and it is a question of assuming responsibilities,” Bishop Medina said.

Bishop Claudio Gimenez of Caacupe told a local radio station that in the face of the revelation of the relationship, Lugo “had only one option and he had to choose to be truthful to the people.”

Bishop Gimenez rejected the idea that Lugo’s case is an argument against celibacy.  “It is rather an obvious call to priests to be faithful.”

Bishop Ignacio Gogorza of Encarnacion said the news Lugo had a relationship with a girl to whom he administered the sacrament of Confirmation “caused much sorrow.”

“As a member of the Church, I accept that we can all sin, but with much sorrow,” Bishop Gogorza said. “What hurts the most is that Lugo had a relationship while he was still Bishop of the Diocese of San Pedro,” he added.

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