Caritas Philippines, the humanitarian arm of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), has joined the chorus of condemnation against the escalating repression of the Catholic Church in Nicaragua.
“We are deeply troubled by the recent wave of arrests of priests and religious workers in Nicaragua,” Bishop Bagaforo declared. “These actions by the Nicaraguan government are a blatant violation of fundamental rights,” he stated, adding that they represent “a clear attempt to silence dissent and suppress the voice of the Church.”
Caritas Philippines echoed Pope Francis’ condemnation of the crackdown and called on the Nicaraguan government to:
- Immediately release all detained priests and religious workers.
- Cease all forms of harassment and intimidation against the Church and its members.
- Respect the right to freedom of religion and the right to peaceful assembly.
- Engage in constructive dialogue with the Church to find a peaceful and just resolution to the current situation.
Bagaforo expressed solidarity with the Nicaraguan Catholic Church, urging the international community to speak out against the injustices and demand respect for fundamental rights. “We stand with our brothers and sisters in the Catholic Church in Nicaragua in their time of need,” he declared. “We urge the international community to speak out against these injustices and to demand that the Nicaraguan government respect the fundamental rights of all its citizens.”
Caritas Philippines concluded its statement by reiterating its commitment to promoting peace, justice, and human dignity in the Philippines and throughout the world. “We will continue to advocate for the rights of all people, regardless of their faith or background,” Bishop Bagaforo affirmed,” and will work tirelessly to build a world where everyone can live in freedom and dignity.”