Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of August 5, 2002
Politics can be 'a light to the world,' says Weisgerber
By ART BABYCH
Canadian Catholic News
Hundreds of World Youth Day pilgrims attending a catechetical teaching at Sts. Peter and Paul Church were told not to rule out politics as a way to be a "light to the world."
Archbishop James Weisgerber of Winnipeg suggested that if God were to read the morning newspaper, "His heart would go immediately to the business pages because he knows on the business pages are reported decisions which affect the dignity of God's people, especially the poor," he said.
Weisgberber said sometimes it is easy to think that "politics is corrupt," but that those who live in democratic countries "have no choice - if we want to be the light of the world - but to get involved in political structures."
Even if the political system does not seem to be according to God's will, "we need to get involved so that we can bring justice to the poor," he said.
Weisgerber also spoke of sexuality and marriage in his catechetical teaching.
"A healthy sexuality is needed to be a light to the world," he said. "We can't be afraid of our sexuality. We need to deal with it openly and responsibly. We need to open our hearts and our minds to the messages of Jesus and his Church and then we have to try to integrate that."
Weisgerber said marriage in some countries has "fallen on very, very bad times."
However he drew applause from the youth by adding, "You've all heard that we don't have enough priests or sisters, but I'm not sure we have enough real, married people."
Many people get married but not all are "a light to others" in the married state, he said.
"Jesus shows us the light," said the archbishop. "We are the light of the world because we are Jesus in the world."
The talk was part of the WYD catechesis program, involving 500 bishops and cardinals.