It defines "a fighter for human rights and a priest of the poor", the Venezuelan Jesuit Numa Molina. We found it in Caracas on the eve of the elections, among microphones, cables and computers of the Conaicop group, the National and International Council of Popular Communication.
What does it mean to be a priest of the poor in Venezuela?
It means being frowned upon by the institutional church, but being very loved by the people of the town, who bet on the Bolivarian process.
How do you explain this call from the ecclesiastical hierarchy against the presidential elections of May 20?
From the beginning, they have been manipulated by the right and have ended up being almost their spokespersons, probably in agreement with the line on the right. Thus we have noted a very strange thing: in the morning, Trump speaks against Venezuela. In the afternoon the right speaks in the same tone. In the night the Episcopal Conference is pronounced. And the three texts are aligned. The bishops should be careful, on the contrary they are not, they are exposed: it means that they are in favor of that line, the line that is oppressing the peoples, the line of those that are leaving us without medicines and cause a very serious economic crisis. terrible. The ecclesiastical hierarchies are in favor of economic warfare and are doing so much harm to the people. Think that this last week we have blocked 7 million dollars that were used to pay medicines to the 15,000 dialysis patients. Fundamental medicines, without which a patient in those conditions, dies. Whoever allows this is responsible for genocide. In international law this is called a crime against humanity. How can I as a Christian, as a Espiscopal Conference declare so lightly against the government and not realize that I am going against the poorest?
Caritas and Ong talk about humanitarian crisis and say that it is the government that violates human rights why it rejects aid ...
I would have preferred that more than talking about humanitarian crisis, act to avoid it, because what matters are the works. "Blessed are those who hear the word of God and put it into practice," Jesus said. Those who listen to it and repeat it like parrots without living it are not blessed. Since they talk so much about humanitarian aid and blame the government for not wanting to receive the medicines, I want to reveal for the first time a fact. I have attended a meeting reserved between the previous president of the Venezuelan Episcopal Conference, Monsignor Padron, Nicolás Maduro and his closest collaborators. The Venezuelan President has not rejected any of Padron's proposals. On the contrary, it has made available a truck of the National Guard with relative military escort to receive the medicines from the arrival to the final destination. After two or three days, I asked the then minister in charge of this, Elias Jaua, if they had reached containers promised by the Caritas medicines and he answered me that he had just gotten a small box that could get into the trunk of a car. It was just a show, a montage. Faced with such falsehood I have decided to reveal this episode. Maduro has not closed any doors to Caritas. He has only asked that the expression of humanitarian aid not be used because it concretely means interference by the United States, synonymous with invasion.
The ecclesiastical hierarchies behave like a political party. They campaign. Removing the faithful Chávez from the churches, blessing fascism in the square, shouting from the altar against "the dictatorship" during a procession like that of the Virgin of Coromoto. How do you explain it?
I am affected by this lack of respect for popular religiosity. The image of a saint behind whom generations of people united in faith can not be used for political purposes. It is necessary to respect popular spirituality, not manipulate it for unhealthy, perverse political purposes. I do not want a religious image to be used by any political party, much less by an ideology that does not respect the poor, like that worker who had come to pray on her birthday and told the pastor that she did not agree with her political sermons, and has been expelled in a bad way by the collaborators of the parish priest. Why ?, It is a daughter of God and I must respect it, it is the most elementary of human rights.
On the subject of Venezuela, Pope Bergoglio seems to sometimes take a different position from that Vatican official. As a personal friend of the Pontiff, what is your opinion?
With Bergoglio I had some particular conversations. One year ago, I celebrated a Mass with him in Santa Marta. And before, in 2013, I have spent an hour with him. I was shocked when, after having been quietly divided by a small reception desk while he celebrated the mass with the tips of his fingers, he told me: "In Latin America the Bolívar dream is at stake, and the dream of San Martín: The Great Homeland ". This is how Bergoglio thinks, but he is besieged by the Vatican right and by that world. From here comes a mountain of false news. A journalist who responds to the Episcopal Conference, Ramón Antonio Pérez, sends negative news every day to the Vatican media. And you know how many news of this kind riddled Francisco every day and for this I admire him for not having yielded to the pressures of the Secretary of State. The same Secretary of State has been nuncio in Venezuela, friend of the largest Venezuelan oligarchic families. I found them, I had lunch with them. This is the Secretary we have. So, thanks to Pope Francis, not for being a Chavista or on the right, but for having avoided pronouncing negative words against Venezuela. The only thing he has done has been to promote dialogue. He has sent me to promote dialogue: "Go promote the dialogue, tell them to talk," he said.