- Apr 13, 2021
Earlier this week it was announced that Cardinal Pedro Barreto, who was among the chief architects of last year’s Synod of Bishops on the Amazon, would be taking charge of the Catholic Church’s leading entity dedicated to protecting the Pan-Amazonian region.
Bolivia’s bishops want environmental concerns to play a key role when voters go to the polls to elect a new government in October.
Church leaders sent a strong message of support to an unprecedented virtual assembly of more than 3,000 indigenous leaders, small farmers, environmental campaigners and women from the nine countries of the Amazon region seriously affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Catholic leaders warn that as the coronavirus pandemic spreads into the Amazon basin, the region may face a “humanitarian and environmental tragedy.”
According to the Archbishop of Manus in Brazil, the official figures of coronavirus deaths “are doubtful,” noting a huge rise in funerals in his archdiocese.
According to the Pan-Amazon Ecclesial Network (REPAM), the people of the Amazon region are more at risk to COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, due to the lack of proper educational system and to the inaccessibility to adequate hygienic and sanitary services.
For anyone inclined to question the need for the synod, or to politicize it, layman Mauricio Lopez in Ecuador has a simple message: “Come live in one of these remote communities for a year.”
The upcoming Synod of Bishops for the Amazon will focus on the devastating effects of climate change on the environment and on indigenous communities, but it also will look at ways to meet the spiritual needs of the region’s people.