The bishops' conference explained that Our Lady of Suyapa Major Seminary is "an inter-diocesan institution which, although it is located in in the Archdiocese of Tegucigalpa, is at the service of the formation of candidates to the priesthood from all the dioceses of Honduras, with the exception of the Diocese of Comayagua."
"The bishops, who are ultimately responsible for the formation of our seminarians, entrusted in 1997 the immediate task (of their formation) to the Congregation of Jesus and Mary (the Eudists) of the Colombian Province, and in recent years they have been joined by Honduran diocesan priests."
"In the academic formation of the seminarians," they said, "a significant number of professors including the cardinal (Rodríguez Maradiaga), priests, nuns and lay people are involved. And, ultimately, each one of the bishops of the Honduran Bishops' Conference is responsible for the formation, financial support and monitoring the human, spiritual and pastoral growth of the seminarians of our own dioceses."
The bishops thanked God because "the enthusiasm, commitment, and dedication of so many people at the major seminary, in each one of the dioceses and parishes are bearing abundant fruit."
However, they noted that it does not surprise them that "in the midst of that fruit weeds would appear."
For the Honduran bishops "it is evident that there are weeds and evil, especially, in making 'anonymous' reports;' in airing them, mixing in facts, suspicions and interpretations; while ignoring the monitoring given to the challenges that arise."
"There are weeds in sexual and affective weakness, which affects all of us and can creates inappropriate attitudes and behaviors. There are weeds in sterile pessimism, in spiritual worldliness, in the search of forms of power, human glories or financial well being," they added.
The bishops acknowledged "that these temptations affect us and that we fall into them. But we equally recognize that the power of God is manifested in our weakness."
The bishops' conference said that the bishops, formators, and seminarians are "engaged in a constructive and demanding dialogue to discern how to face the challenges that are posed to us by reality."
"At this time, to support that commitment, we have requested the collaboration of a bishop emeritus of our continent, with experience in the field of priestly formation and who has also accepted our request."
The Honduran bishops asked priests to "increase your commitment, and generous dedication to the service of the Gospel such that, following your example, free and mature vocations may come forth, unafraid to serve."
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"We ask current and future seminarians to engage enthusiastically in your discernment process, grow in confidence, authenticity and transparency with your bishops and formators, and let your communities and parishes honestly see the strengths and weaknesses of the seminary."
Finally, they said, "we ask everyone to increase your prayers for our Major Seminary and avoid any kind of speculation which fails to respect the dignity of bishops, seminarians, the formators, and that of all of us who with limitations and failings seek to carry out the Lord's work."
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This article was originally published by our Spanish language sister agency, ACI Prensa. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.