10/09/2019, 16.39
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Amazon Synod: appeal made for "new ministries" for the Amazonian peoples

Bishop Kräutler: "Indigenous peoples do not understand celibacy".  Deepen and disseminate a theological literature that includes, together with traditionally known sins,  "ecological sins" that treat sin against the environment as a sin against God, against one's neighbor and future generations.


Vatican City (AsiaNews) - The creation of "new ministries" to respond to the needs of the peoples of the Amazon, including a "lay ministry" for women, was put forward during this morning's meeting of the Synod, where discussions also returned to the now problematic issue of the ordination of married men, the "viri probati".

With regard to the female diaconate, "it is a question of bringing out the ecclesial subjectivity of women", explained Father Giacomo Costa, secretary of the Information Commission, during today's briefing in the Vatican Press Office: "Not as a demand, but as recognition of what we are already experiencing ”.

The "possibility of increasing the permanent deaconate of the indigenous, which performs different functions" was one of the ideas put forward yesterday afternoon and this morning.  Paolo Ruffini, prefect of the Communication Department explained that the reference was "to the ministry of the Word, the administration of baptisms, of communion, of marriages, accompaniment in the celebrations for the dead". 

Synod participants observed that since the Second Vatican Council, greater efforts have been requested in favor of an inculturation of the liturgy, with celebrations that respect both the traditions and languages ​​of the local peoples, and the integral message of the Gospel.  Careful discernment on the part of the bishops is needed so that no solution can be excluded a priori, not even the ordination of married men.  "There is no other possibility", claimed Msgr.  Erwin Kräutler, bishop emeritus bishop of Xingu, in Brazil, answering journalists' questions during today's Synod briefing.  "Indigenous peoples do not understand celibacy, and they say it openly," he added.  "The first thing they tell me when I arrive in a village is: "where is your wife? ".  They cannot understand that man is not married, that he does not have a woman to take care of the house ".

The integral health of the Amazon, is one of the concerns exposed this morning by the synod fathers.  The model of development of capitalism that devours nature, the fires that are destroying the region, corruption, deforestation and illegal cultivation in fact threaten both the health of people and that of the territory and of the entire planet.

The slowness that the Catholic Church sometimes has in reaching the needs of the population and which creates a void that is filled by the proposal of the neo-Pentecostal churches has also been highlighted.

Ecumenical and interreligious dialogue remains urgent and indispensable: respectful and fruitful, a fundamental dimension for the outgoing Church in the Pan-Amazonian region, characterized by a multicultural context.

 Yesterday afternoon, finally, next to the denunciation of the unacceptable situation of environmental degradation in the Pan-Amazonian region, in front of which the international community is often indifferent, an "ecological conversion" was hoped for that would help us perceive the gravity of the sin against the environment on a par with  a sin against God, against one's neighbor and future generations.  Hence the proposal to deepen and disseminate a theological literature that includes together with the traditionally known sins, "ecological sins".

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