Message from Cardinal Czerny for the Meeting with Church Aid Institutions and Organizations in Latin America

Message from Cardinal Czerny for the Meeting with Church Aid Institutions and Organizations in Latin America

The Meeting with Institutions and Organisations of International Fraternal Synodal Cooperation for Latin America and the Caribbean took place from 4 to 8 March in Bogota, Colombia. The event, organised by Celam (Latin American Episcopal Council), brings together fraternal international cooperation organisations from Latin America, the Caribbean, North America and Europe. The objective is to strengthen solidarity and synodal cooperation between the participating institutions and bodies, starting from reflection and commitment to promoting community processes of evangelisation, integral human development, and integral ecology.

The Prefect of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, Card. Michael Czerny, sent a video message to the participants. In a time of crisis like the one we are experiencing, the Cardinal said, it is important for the Church to be united in listening and helping those most in need. We must “follow the Synodal process by listening to the People of God, especially the inhabitants of the existential peripheries, to interpret together the signs of the times and respond to the great challenges of today, such as globalisation, forced displacement, the resurgence of racism, the intensification of social violence, the precariousness of housing, the increase in poverty and the destruction of creation”.

The event in Bogota, follows the one that took place in June 2023 in the Vatican, in which the Prefect of the Dicastery had already had the opportunity to dialogue with the Institutions and Ecclesial Organizations of Aid to the Church on the continent. That of Bogota was, therefore, also an opportunity to resume the speeches already started the previous year, in the fulfilment of the mission of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development “to respond in the most effective way possible to the Episcopal Conferences, Bishops and in general to the local Churches”. In this sense, the Cardinal recalled the success of the creation of the Popolorum Progressio Fund, carried out in cooperation with the Presidency of Celam.

Confirming the importance of acting together, in a synodal spirit, the cardinal then concluded: 'Only if one cooperates in solidarity with the local Churches, respecting the principle of subsidiarity, can one hope for a final success'.

Pope Francis also sent a message to the participants in the Meeting with the Institutions and the Organizations of Aid to the Church in Latin America, dwelling on the theme of gratuitousness: “When we make an effort, as in the case of aid to the Church in Latin America, it is natural that we demand a result. Not getting it could be considered a failure or at least leaves us with the feeling of having worked in vain.” But the Holy Father explains: “effort is not useless, because there is an end. By giving us like this, we imitate Jesus who gave himself to save us all.”

To read the Message of Pope Francis click here.

08 March 2024