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reposted with permission of Catholic World News


MEXICO CITY (CWNews.com) - Bishop Felipe Arizmendi Esquivel of Tapachula in Chiapas state announced on Sunday that a group of Mexican bishops are planning to visit several native communities in Chiapas in August to "listen to problems and expectations and to proclaim reconciliation in the area."

Bishop Arizmendi said the bishops of the Commission for Peace and Reconciliation in Chiapas will meet natives and officials of the region from August 10 to 13 "to listen to people, renew our message of peace, and establish new means of dialogue in order to achieve new methods for reconciliation." He said that after the disappearance of the National Commission of Negotiation (CONAI) headed by Bishop Samuel Ruiz, the Mexican Bishops' Conference does not seek any mediating role in the crisis because "our mission is to help both sides in the conflict to achieve direct talks."

In this regard, the bishop of Tapachula said that Mexico's bishops "strongly support the work of the official Commission for Concord and Pacification to set up a meeting between government representatives and Zapatista rebels." He added, "This is a big effort that everyone must support. No one can stay indifferent during this crisis and the government has to seek quick solutions to this violent situation."

Bishop Arizmendi revealed that Mexico's bishops want to have peace in the country before the upcoming papal visit in January, but if it is not the case, "we will expect his message to help us find new ways to face the problem, and start to live as brothers and sisters."

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