Statement of the Vincentian Family in the Face of Racial Discrimination
The Vincentian Family is a worldwide movement made up of more than 4 million believers and more than 160 ecclesial institutions which, for more than 4 centuries, has served the most needy in our world.
As members of Vincentian Family, we do not want to nor should we remain impassive in the face of the discrimination that millions of people still suffer today as a result of the color of their skin, their national origin, their gender, their sexual orientation, their beliefs or their culture. Racism is a cancer that corrodes our society and is present worldwide, in every country and in every society. Not only is it a severe offence directed at anyone who is different, but it is also an insult to our humanity and to the intrinsic dignity of every human being, and a very serious sin.
As members of the Vincentian Family and as believers, we trust in a God who created all people equal and thus, all are God’s children. Racism is therefore the complete opposite of faith in the God who gave us life. As Christians, we follow in the footsteps of Jesus Christ, who never made distinctions among people and treated everyone with dignity and respect.
As members of the Vincentian Family, we want to continue to stand by the most forgotten in our society and, among them, especially those who suffer discrimination because they are different. Saint Vincent de Paul, our founder, reminds us that we must love our neighbor simply because our neighbor is “the image of God and the object of his love.” We reaffirm our commitment to serve the excluded, the needy, the homeless, all those who suffer discriminatory treatment for any reason. We commit ourselves to reinforce our actions and take measures so that no one has to suffer harassment or death because of discrimination. We commit ourselves to raise our voices in all forums where we are present to denounce these injustices. We commit ourselves to giving a voice to those who are excluded and discriminated against, so that they can be the protagonists of their own history.
Racial prejudice has no place in our society, in any public or private institution and must be combated vigorously. The evil it causes not only affects the person who is abused and even killed, but corrupts and destroys the social fabric and dehumanizes relationships, generating irrational hatred. We therefore urge all authorities to take firm measures to ensure that cases of segregation, racism, differential treatment and violence against any person, based on discrimination of any kind, are not repeated.
Human life is important, whatever the color of the skin, their national origin, their gender, their sexual orientation, their beliefs or their culture.
Signed: The Vincentian Family Executive Committee (VFEC).
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