Paraguayan episcopate rejects political activity of bishop emeritus

.- The Bishops’ Conference of Paraguay issued a statement last Friday expressing clear disapproval of the political activity of Bishop Emeritus Fernando Lugo of San Pedro, who said he is considering a run for the presidency.

Bishop Adalberto Martinez, speaking on behalf of the Conference, read the statement which emphasized that “the Church should not embark on its own on a political endeavor” and that “canon law prevents Bishop Lugo from being dedicated to religious and political activities at the same time.”

Although the bishops “are not annoyed” by Bishop Lugo, they do wish to “know what he will do with his religious future,” and they noted that “it falls to the Holy See, to the Vatican, to grant him the corresponding dispensation to become involved in politics, but the request should be made by the former bishop; if he does not act thus, he will be in a state of rebellion.”

Bishop Lugo responded to the statement saying, “The position of the Paraguayan Bishops’ Conference is correct. For my part, I still have not made a final decision but by December I will announce whether or not I accept the nomination to lead the Citizen Assembly party.”

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