A Mexican archbishop has condemned his country’s “shameful corruption” and called for a deep reform that begins with conversion.
“The climate of violence and insecurity is deeply troubling to all of us, as well as the concealed corruption and the scant solidarity in the face of unemployment and poor public health,” Archbishop Reyes Larios of Xalapa, Veracruz, said in a homily on 22 September.
Former Veracruz governor Javier Duarte was sentenced in 2018 to nine years in prison for money laundering and organised crime charges.
Crime and corruption is rife in Veracruz, whilst violence is also rampant. 682 homicides and 122 kidnappings were registered in just the first quarter of 2019. Many Catholic priests have been murdered or kidnapped in the last few years.
“I hope that all Mexicans and especially the citizens of Veracruz open our minds and hearts to hope and solidarity in the construction of a more united and fraternal State,” the archbishop said.
“I hope that we recover honesty and good administration which drives us to achieve the common good and overcome shameful corruption,” he added.
The archbishop of Xalapa denounced corruption and fraud, as well as the use of “social welfare benefits to buy political votes.”
He pointed to Jesus’ warning in the Gospels against trying to simultaneously serve God and money.
“Wealth has an irresistible power, and when a human being enters into the dynamic of gaining more and living better, money replaces the providence of God and demands absolute submission,” he said.
“The heart of the individual trapped by money hardens. He tends to seek only his own interests. He doesn’t think of the suffering and needs of others.”
“There is no place for solidarity nor for a God who is a merciful Father and compassionate with all his children,” the archbishop said.
Picture: Confiscated bullets are seen in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, in this 2012 file photo. (CNS photo/Alejandro Bringas, EPA).