Montevideo, Uruguay (Tuesday, April 12, 2016, Gaudium Press) The Archbishop of Montevideo, Cardinal Daniel Sturla, SDB, spoke out regarding the controversy over the a statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary to be placed on one of the central avenues of the city of Montevideo, bordering the sea, called the “Rambla del Buceo”. The Cardinal was interviewed by the newspaper El Pais and also issued a statement printed on the Web page of the archdiocese on March 29.
Some objectors have said that it is “invasion of public space”, or even that it is a strategy of the Church for the purpose of proselytism.
The cardinal commented that “through the social media we have different ways of reaching people and it is not through a statue in the ‘Rambla’ that we will reach this goal.” “I thought that in this country of Uruguay we would have already reached a matured and positive secularism and that the presence of the Virgin in the street would be considerate as something natural”. “The Church exercises its freedom in a pluralistic society”.
Cardinal Sturla explained that the request to erect the statue in a public space was an initiative of a group of lay Catholic people, and that “some of the conflicts that arise around our secularity, when they have to do with the Catholic Church, according to us have to do with some thoughts of what remains of the fighter was taken into secularism in our country a hundred years ago.”
“To put a statue of the Virgin does not mean appropriating any public space, like the existence of monuments honoring people from different parties, currents of thought, traditions … that already exists, does not mean that the community belonging to this party or that tradition they have appropriated those places. “
This issue of the statue “is an expression of freedom and therefore true secularism” he said.
Source: ANS and Archdiocese of Montevideo