Bolivian bishops call for reconciliation in midst of deep national crisis

The Bishops Conference of Bolivia has issued a statement entitled, “In the name of Christ, Be reconciled,” in which they exhort Bolivians to leave aside “polarizing and irreconcilable positions.”

“We are all witness of the radical positions and measures that provoke a situation of general uncertainty.  The recent events of social pressure and the resignation of the President of the Republic are a sign of the extreme moment at which we Bolivians have arrived.  This situation of political and social disintegration is putting democratic stability and the very foundation of the country at risk,” the bishops write.

They warn that “confrontational attitudes that bring us to the brink of the abyss” cannot be allowed to continue, and they reiterate their belief in the democratic system as the best way to resolve common problems.

In their message the bishops propose three clear signs they say will help to establish a “social truce” in the country.  First, a “new attitude” among Bolivians is needed in which people overcome prejudice and self interest and look to the common good.  Second, the “ability to listen” which, based on the principle of tolerance, takes into account everyone’s voice and especially the voices of those who are most vulnerable and in need.  Third, “sincere generosity” on the part of all social and political leaders in the country, in the direction of openness and collaboration.

The bishops conclude expressing their “strong conviction and trust that the Bolivian people will be able once again to overcome these difficulties, achieving greater maturity and democratic culture, which will allow us to contribute to a lasting peace, based on justice, truth, solidarity and love.”

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