Aparecida 424: Entrapped

424. We denounce the fact that the drug business has become routine in some of our countries, due to the huge economic interests involved in it. One consequence is the large number of people, most of them children and youth, who are now enslaved and living in very dangerous situations, who turn to drugs to calm their hunger, or to escape from the cruel and discouraging situation in which they live.*

“Brazil’s statistics concerning drug abuse and other forms of chemical dependency are very high. The same is true of Latin America in general. I therefore urge the drug-dealers to reflect on the grave harm they are inflicting on countless young people and on adults from every level of society: God will call you to account for your deeds. Human dignity cannot be trampled upon in this way. The harm done will receive the same censure that Jesus reserved for those who gave scandal to the ‘little ones,’ the favorites of God (cf. Mt 18:7-10).” (Benedict XVI, Speech at Fazenda da Esperanca, May 12, 2007).

Pope Francis called on Mafiosi to repent or go to hell. Pope Benedict was less blunt but no less truthful. It is important for us to recognize that drug use is not usually an intellectual or even a moral failure. Too often, it is a trap set by others.

For deeper examination, an English translation of the 2007 document from the Aparecida Conference.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
This entry was posted in 2007 Aparecida document, bishops, evangelization and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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