said his appointment to the College of Cardinals was a sign of “support
for the Bishops’ Conference of Spain, that we continue ahead
unfalteringly with the mission we have in this delicate phase our
country is experiencing.”
immersed in a profound cultural change characterized by a secular plan
imposed on our society, a plan that seeks to eradicate the Christian
roots that form our foundation and a cultural change characterized also
by nihilism, the neo-Marxism, where God doesn’t count and is reduced to
the private sphere. And this doesn’t happen without very serious
consequences for man and for our society,” the cardinal-designate said.
Cañizares denied the government’s claim that the Church is
“inappropriately interfering” in public life. “Is it interference
to defend fundamental human rights such as the right to life, to defend
the human being from the first moment of conception, to protect him
against manipulation and destruction?” he asked.
interference to defend the truth about marriage, which consists solely
of the stable union between a man and a woman through love that is open
to life? Is it interference to protect marriage and the family
from ‘quick’ divorce? Is it interference to defend freedom of
education and that parents see their right respected to have their
children educated or to receive a moral and religious education that is
in accord with their moral and religious convictions?”
bishops,” he continued, “have the duty to do what we are doing.
If not, we would not be good bishops who defend the truth about the
“What I am
demanding is that, for the good of Spain, of our society and of our
people, those fundamental principles and rights be respected, that the
ethical foundation of our society be sustained and respected, that we
not fall into an ethical relativism which will bring down
democracy. Because when we defend moral principles, the human
person and his dignity, greatness and freedom, the right to a moral and
religious formation, etc, we are defending democracy. If we
don’t, then the future of democracy in Spain and in other countries is
seriously at risk,” he said.
cardinal-designate praised the laity for their peaceful protests
demanding respect for marriage, the family and human dignity, saying
such manifestations prove that “this is not about being against
anybody, but rather that Christians want to be heard because we are
convinced that faith in Jesus Christ is valid for all and is a richness
that mankind needs today.”
despite everything, I believe this is a very hopeful moment, a sign of
a new springtime in the Church,” he said in conclusion.
– In an exclusive interview with the Catholic News Agency, Archbishop
Antonio Cañizares of Toledo, who was recently named cardinal by Pope
Benedict XVI, spoke at length about the challenges of secularism and
the hopes of the Church.