.- The Bishops Conference of Argentina published a letter this week in which they said only “a long process of conversion” will allow the country to overcome its crisis, the deepest roots of which are “moral and cultural.” The letter calls on politicians to fulfill their duty in bringing about a recovery in the country and to leave behind “old practices” through “a sincere and selfless conversion towards the common good.”
The bishops pointed out that it’s more common to see people “take advantage of the riches of the country” than to find “citizens desirous” of the common good. Therefore they exhort citizens to live “with a spirit of justice, truthfulness, solidarity, industriousness, trying to be like yeast in the dough of society.”
The bishops cite the “Barometer of Argentinean Social Debt” which, according to the bishops, demonstrates the “damage suffered by large sectors” of society for decades.”
This text was prepared by the Pontifical Catholic University of Argentina and explains that “the social debt is composed of deprivations that pose serious risk to the sustaining of life, the dignity of persons and opportunities for human growth.”
The bishops’ letter states that what is serious about this situation is that it is taking place in “a country that has the objective conditions to avoid or correct such harm.”
Referring to the “just distribution” of land, the bishops express their concern about land being concentrated in the hands of a few, about the situation of Native Americans, the deterioration of the environment. This leads thousands of Argentineans to leave their land and crowd into the suburbs of large cities.
Archbishop Carmelo Giaquinta of Resistencia and President of the Bishops’ Committee on Social Ministry told reporters that while it may appear the country is improving, getting out of the crisis “will take years.”