The bishops of Argentina came late to the political campaign promoted by the Kirchner couple to approve "same sex marriage" in Argentina, almost as if forced by some higher power (the Holy See?), which means that, in the end, they lost it, a first in a Latin-American nation. In order to make clear that our coverage is always balanced, and realistic, not marked by false optimism, we re-post that text first posted on July 9, 2010. This is, however, a kind of document rarely found in the history of the then-Archbishop.
By the way, you may find our many posts on the Church in Argentina and on then-Cardinal Bergoglio by searching our archives. Unlike others, we are not newcomers to this matter, and we know what we are talking about.
May the Holy Family join us "in God's war"
[July 9, 2010:] We have criticized Cardinal Bergoglio here before - not least because of his hostility towards the Traditional Mass -, but cannot fail to acknowledge this beautiful letter sent to the Carmelites of his diocese and made public this week, regarding the grave matter of the legal redefinition of marriage.
[Letter of Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Archbishop of Buenos Aires, to the Carmelite Nuns of the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires (June 22, 2010)]
I write this letter to each one of you in the four Monasteries of Buenos Aires. The Argentine people must face, in the next few weeks, a situation whose result may gravely harm the family. It is the bill on matrimony of persons of the same sex.
The identity of the family, and its survival, are in jeopardy here: father, mother, and children. The life of so many children who will be discriminated beforehand due to the lack of human maturity that God willed them to have with a father and a mother is in jeopardy. A clear rejection of the law of God, engraved in our hearts, is in jeopardy.
I recall words of Saint Thérèse when she speaks of the infirmity of her childhood. She says that the envy of the Devil tried to extort her family after her older sister joined the Carmel. Here, the envy of the Devil, through which sin entered the world, is also present, and deceitfully intends to destroy the image of God: man and woman, who receive the mandate to grow, multiply, and conquer the earth. Let us not be naive: it is not a simple political struggle; it is an intention [which is] destructive of the plan of God. It is not a mere legislative project (this is a mere instrument), but rather a "move" of the father of lies who wishes to confuse and deceive the children of God.
Jesus tells us that, in order to defend us from this lying accuser, he will send us the Spirit of Truth. Today, the Nation [patria], before this situation, needs the special assistance of the Holy Ghost that may place the light of Truth amid the shadows of error; it needs this Advocate who may defend us from the enchantment of so many sophisms with which this bill is being justified, and which confuse and deceive even people of good will.
That is why I turn to you and ask from you prayer and sacrifice, the two invincible weapons which Saint Thérèse confessed to have. Cry out to the Lord that he may send his Spirit to the Senators who are to place their votes. That they may not do it moved by error or by circumstantial matters, but rather according to what the natural law and the law of God tell them. Pray for them, for their families; that the Lord may visit, strengthen, and console them. Pray that they may do great good for the Nation.
This bill will be discussed in the Senate after July 13. Let us look towards Saint Joseph, to Mary, the Child, and let us ask with fervor that they will defend the Argentine family in this moment. Let us recall what God himself told his people in a time of great anguish: "this war is not yours, but God's". That they may succour, defend, and accompany us in this war of God.
Thank you for what you will do in this struggle for the Nation. And, please, I beg you, pray for me also. May Jesus bless you, and may the Blessed Virgin protect you.
Card. Jorge Mario Bergoglio s.j., Archbishop of Buenos Aires
The first results of the prayers of millions of Argentinians could be seen this week as a Senate committee voted down the bill approved by the Lower house, despite the intense pressure of the President, her husband and former President, and her government in favor of its approval [several news sources]. However, the matter is not yet over - the full Senate could still approve the bill this month.