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Peruvian cardinal: Church must avoid partisan involvement

July 10, 2012

Cardinal Juan Luis Cipriani Thorne of Lima warned against clerical involvement in partisan political affairs, as Church leaders in Peru sought to mediate an increasingly tense conflict over the opening of a new mine.

Protests against the proposed gold mine in Cajamarca exploded into violence last week, and 5 demonstrators were killed in battles with police. Hoping to stave off further violence, Archbishop Miguel Cabrejos of Trujillo met with leaders of the protest, and was planning to meet with Peru’s justice minister, Juan Jimenez.

Cardinal Cipriani cautioned that while Church leaders can and should work for peace and justice, they must avoid partisan activities. He explained:

We must be careful when speaking of the Church in regard to any temporal situation, because the Church has a mission which transcends earthly realities, being centered on the salvation of souls. The Church has credibility among the people in the measure that she preaches the Word of God. We, members of the clergy, must be humble and not talk about issues which are not our competence. We, bishops and priests, exist to form consciences well, so that they will be free in the truth and responsible in justice.


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  • Posted by: Justin8110 - Jul. 10, 2012 6:03 PM ET USA

    I tend to agree with this. In the end ther Kingdom of God "is not of this world." The Catholic Church is the embassy of the City of God and the only place where one can get his passport stamped and the food needed for the journey to the Kingdom of Heaven but like most embassies the Church stands as a witness and a refuge--a safe haven from the tumult in the world around. All political systems are corrupted by fallen man. There is no perfect political society or party.