Pope Urges Brazil to Get Past Liberation Theology

Cites Document From His Time Leading Doctrinal Congregation

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VATICAN CITY, DEC. 8, 2009 (Zenit.org).- Communities in Brazil still need to get past the divisions caused by Marxist liberation theology, Benedict XVI says.

The Pope encouraged Brazilian bishops to help heal the wounds left by the materialist theology when he spoke with them Saturday. The bishops — from Brazil’s South 3 and South 4 regions — were in Rome for their five-yearly visit.

The Holy Father recalled that last August was the 25th anniversary of the instruction “Libertatis Nuntius,” a document he signed as prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

The statements notes how there are many currents of “theology of liberation,” as liberation is one of the central messages of Revelation, both in the Old as well as the New Testament.
However, one of these, particularly in the last three decades of the 20th century, took Marxism as its base in an attempt to understand the complex and sometimes scandalous social reality of Latin America. That current became known as Marxist theology of liberation — many times simply, though erroneously, called liberation theology.
As the Pope explained to the Brazilian bishops, “its more or less visible consequences, made up of rebellion, division, disagreement, offense and anarchy can still be felt, creating great suffering in your diocesan communities and a serious loss of living energies.”
“I implore all those who, in some way, have felt attracted, involved and touched in their interior by certain deceitful principles of liberation theology to take up again that document, receiving the gentle light that it offers with open hands,” the Bishop of Rome continued.
Citing Pope John Paul II, Benedict XVI explained how Marxist philosophy cannot underly the Church’s faith, but rather, “the unity that the Spirit has put between sacred Tradition, sacred Scripture and the magisterium of the Church in such a reciprocity that the three cannot subsist in an independent way.”

He concluded with the wish that “forgiveness offered and received, in the ambit of ecclesial organizations and communities, in the name of and out of love for the Most Holy Trinity, which we adore in our hearts, put an end to the suffering of the beloved Church that journeys in the lands of the holy cross.”

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