While encouraging the initiative of the meeting, the Pope has developed some ideas that we resume in the lines below.
– 1 Politics must be conceived as a high form of charity or, rather, as an invaluable service of dedication to the accomplishment of the common good of society. Politics is therefore not at the service of individual ambitions, factionalism and interests. We must not oppose service and power, but power must be subordinated to service so as not to degenerate.
– 2 The common good is the set of social conditions that enable both groups and each of their members to achieve perfection in a more total and easy way (Gaudium et Spes, § 26
– 3 We all feel the need to rehabilitate the dignity of politics because of popular disrepute in which all political bodies have fallen. (The crisis of political parties, the lack of a valuable political debate about projects and strategies at a national and regional level, the open and respectful dialogue that seeks possible convergences, is often replaced by bursts of reciprocal accusations and demagogic fallout). There is also a lack of training and renewal of political generations.
– 4 We need political leaders who:
- Live with passion their service to the people;
- Vibrate with the intimate fibers of their ethos and their culture, in solidarity with their sufferings and their hopes;
- Promote the common good in relation to their private interests;
- Do not be intimidated by the great financial and media powers
- Be competent in the face of complex problems;
- Be open to listen and learn in democratic dialogue;
- Conjugate the search for justice with mercy and reconciliation;
- Mobilize vast popular spaces by teaching large national and regional goals.
– 5 We must face the following problems and challenges:
- Safeguarding the gift of life in all its phases and manifestations;
- Industrial and technological growth, supported autonomously and realistically;
- The tragedy of poverty, equity and social inclusion;
- Integral education, which starts with the family and develops into schooling for all and quality;
– 6 We need to move towards mature, participatory democracies without the plagues of corruption or ideological colonization or autocratic pretexts and cheap demagogues. Let’s take care of our common house and its most vulnerable inhabitants, avoiding any kind of suicidal indifference and wild exploitation. Let us put first and concretely the demand for economic, social, cultural and political integration of the fraternal peoples to gradually build our continent of peace and justice, which will be even more humane.
– 7 We cannot resign ourselves to the deteriorating situation in which we often struggle today. Catholics must engage in politics. It is necessary that the lay Catholics do not remain indifferent to the public affairs or folded in their temple, nor that they don’t wait the directives and the ecclesial instructions to fight for the justice, and form of life more humane for all.
– 8 Catholics appear to be rather non-existent in the political scenario, or outright assimilated to a logic worldly. Catholics in politics must set up strong currents that open the way of the Gospel in the political life of nations.
– 9 The number of exemplary Catholics in politics must increase, but reduce the number of Catholics who show little coherence with the ethical and religious convictions of the Catholic Magisterium, who are so absorbed by their political commitments that they end up relegate their faith to the background, but also reduce the number of those who do not feel recognized, encouraged, supported and supported in the protection and development of their faith, by the Pastors and by the Christian communities.
-10 The Christian contribution to political action is manifested only through the declarations of the Episcopates, without manifesting the particular mission of the Catholic laity to organize, manage and transform society according to the evangelical criteria and the heritage of the Catholic Church. Social Doctrine of the Church.
– 11 The pastoral accompaniment of Catholic laity in politics means for pastors:
- Seek the means of encouraging, accompanying, stimulating all the attempts and efforts that are made today to maintain hope and faith in a world full of contradictions, especially for the poorest, especially the most vulnerable.
- To be immersed in the midst of our people and, with our people, to support their faith and their hope.
- Reflect on how to accompany a baptized person in his public and daily life; on his way to engage as a Christian in public life, in his daily activity and with his responsibilities.
- Stimulate and promote charity and fraternity, the desire for good, truth and justice.
- Listen with great attention to the experience, thoughts and concerns that lay people can share with us who live their faith in different social and political environments.
- Make sure that corruption does not happen in our hearts.
- Do not fall into the temptation to think that the engaged layman is only the one who works in the works of the Church and / or in the things of the parish or diocese.
– 12 We must recognize that the laity by its reality, by its identity, because it is immersed in the heart of the social, public and political life, because it takes part in the cultural actions that are constantly being created, needs new forms of organizations and celebrations of faith “.
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