Sunday, October 11, 2009

Honduran Bishops on Dialogue

Statement of the Honduran Episcopal Conference on the dialogue

“Let us seek what contributes to peace and make us grow together.” (Romans 14: 19)

1. We, the bishops of the Honduras Bishops’ Conference, meeting in our Ordinary Assembly, feel very united to all the people who, both within and outside of Honduras, have paid attention to the dialogue which is being held in order to seek a constructive exit to the political crisis which our country is living.

2. We have experienced in our own flesh, in the Church and in society, the sufferings, divisions and violence which this prolonged crisis has brought with it. He have lived the worry and the fear that a solution might be sought by the paths of violence.

3. We declare our support of the dialogue which began anew on October 7. In every moment we have advocated for that pedagogy [educational process] of sincere dialogue which diligently seeks the best solution for everyone in charity and truth.

4. We ask those directly involved in the dialogue and those they represent that “everyone of them, overcoming personal inclinations, make efforts to seek the truth and resolutely pursue the common good.” (Words of Pope Benedict XVI about the situation in Honduras at the Angelus, Sunday, July 12, 2009)

5. We cannot continue with the uncertainty, personal and social tension, and the economic deterioration. What is urgent is a solution which is just, peaceful, and agreed upon which “assures peaceful life together and an authentic democratic life.” (Words of Pope Benedict XVI)

6. The presence of members of the Organization of American States, the European Community, and the national and international press is a sign of the interest there is that this dialogue carries the ship of our nation to a good port. The people of Honduras have put many hopes in this national dialogue which cannot remain frustrated since that would lead to a great deception and increasing personal and social tensions.

7. In this climate of dialogue which ought to be respectful and understanding, every form of violence – of word or deed – would be prejudicial and would be an attack on the attitudes which favor dialogue and would lead to a failure of credibility for those who provoked such violence.

8. We believe that the established dialogue is not to be narrowed to a technique of solving conflicts but it has an ethical dimension, since the exercise [of dialogue] implies moral attitudes and is at the service of what is good, just and true for our people. Consequently, those who sit at the “table of dialogue” have a serious responsibility before God and before society which they ought not forget or underestimate.

9. We are conscious that a political agreement is not the total solution to the serious problems which plague Honduras, but at least would place the country in the suitable institutional conditions to confront them, in the framework of a joint plan, with the participation of everyone, in accord with the principle of subsidiarity and with a new style of political working which “places the common good as the principle imperative for the construction of a new society.” (Pastoral Letter of the Honduras Bishops’ Conference, “By the Paths of Hope,” # 15, March, 2006)

10. We are praying persistently and with confidence that God would grant all of us, and especially those responsible for this dialogue, wisdom, capacity to listen, social sensitivity, and a spirit of discernment. We know that other persons are praying for this intention. We invite the Catholic faithful and all believers to intensify that prayer so that God will grant us times of peaceful living together, social justice, and development with solidarity.

Tegucigalpa, October 8, 2009
Signed by the archbishop and the bishops of the country

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