.- The prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, Cardinal Claudio Hummes, called on the faithful in Latin America to reach out to fallen away Catholics who have joined other Christian denominations.
"We can’t sit and wait in the parishes," he said. "We should go out ourselves to bring the baptized back. We should go out to poor on the outskirts of town, who need our solidarity, our warmth. We should help them with their daily problems, but also to fulfill their dreams, because the poor also have dreams," the cardinal said.
"In recent years," he continued, "the Church in America has lost 1% of its faithful each year." Therefore, he encouraged Catholics to create new initiatives of evangelization in the region where almost half of the world’s Catholics live. "Perhaps the future of worldwide Catholicity is at risk," he said.
Among the reasons Catholics leave the Church to join other Christian denominations is "the moral relativism imported from Europe and introduced into Latin America, especially by local leaders, the mass media and intellectuals," the cardinal said, citing the recent legalization of abortion in Mexico as an example.
"The Church in Latin America should ask itself what it has not done right and why it has not been able to implant a more profound faith in the baptized," he continued, warning also that this is not a problem affecting solely the Church in Latin America but also in the rest of the world.