Bishops encourage Nicaraguans to participate in ‘public life’


The Bishops’ Conference of Nicaragua has published a statement in light of the upcoming local elections warning the citizens of “shadows” falling upon the society and also encouraging Catholics to responsibly participate in public life.

In their statement, the bishops acknowledge the “clear indifference” of voters demonstrated by the lack of interest in the elections.  The prelates lamented the “low level of ethics in public discourse, which has become deceitful, full of insults and discrediting of one’s opponent to the point of calumny.”

“These shadows demand an explanation from us and we want to offer our reflection on history from the standpoint of believers,” the bishops said.  “We call for openness to sincere dialogue that has, as its shared objective, the confrontation of the crisis that is hurting us more than others,” they added.

The bishops called on citizens “to persist with their vote,” even though “there can sometimes be doubts about the transparency of the electoral process.”  Therefore, they continued, “we appeal to the sense of responsibility of the laity to be present in public life.”

“Participation in elections is not only a right that we as Nicaraguan citizens have, it is also an obligation to our local community and the nation,” the bishops stated. “Not to vote is to already elect someone; it is conforming one's self with those who are opposed to us.  To evade the responsibility of voting is to renounce the possibility of participating in the development of our local municipalities,” the bishops said.

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