Pope Francis Apologizes For Sins Against Native Peoples



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Pope Francis Apologizes For Sins Against Native Peoples
Posted on: July 19, 2015, 11:45:51 AM

Following in the footsteps of St. John Paul II,
Pope Francis on Thursday asked forgiveness
for crimes against the indigenous peoples of
Latin America during “the so-called conquest of
“I say this to you with regret: many grave sins
were committed against the native peoples of
America in the name of God,” he said July 9.
“My predecessors acknowledged this, CELAM
(The Latin American Episcopal Council) has
said it, and I too wish to say it. Like Saint John
Paul II, I ask that the Church ‘kneel before God
and implore forgiveness for the past and
present sins of her sons and daughters’.”
“I would also say, and here I wish to be quite
clear, as was Saint John Paul II: I humbly ask
forgiveness, not only for the offenses of the
Church herself, but also for crimes committed
against the native peoples during the so-called
conquest of America.”
The Pope’s comments came during an address
to the World Meeting of Popular Movements in
Bolivia. Francis is currently in the middle of a
July 5-13 trip through Latin America, which
began in Ecuador and will continue in
In his address, the pontiff spoke out against
“colonialism, both old and new, which reduces
poor countries to mere providers of raw
material and cheap labor, engenders violence,
poverty, forced migrations and all the evils
which go hand in hand with these.”
“Let us say no to forms of colonialism old and
new. Let us say yes to the encounter between
peoples and cultures. Blessed are the
peacemakers,” he said.
The Holy Father called for changes that respect
the environment, workers, and families. He
spoke of the “process of change,” which he
described as “(c)hange seen not as something
which will one day result from any one political
decision or change in social structure. We know
from painful experience that changes of
structure which are not accompanied by a
sincere conversion of mind and heart sooner or
later end up in bureaucratization, corruption
and failure.”
Pope Francis also spoke out against faith-
based persecution in the Middle East and
around the globe.
“This too needs to be denounced: in this third
world war, waged peacemeal, which we are
now experiencing, a form of genocide is taking
place, and it must end.”


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