Argentinian bishop allows priest to enter politics
An Argentine bishop has permitted a priest to run for political office, the Catholic news agency AICA said.
The Diocese of Quilmes published an official decree, announcing that Bishop Jorge Novak authorised Fr Luis Angel Farinello to "participate in the capacity of candidate to a national legislative post in the forthcoming elections."
It said that the bishop removed the priest "from all responsibilities of a pastoral nature from the moment his candidacy is made public and for the duration of his mandate, should he be elected."
The decree said that in virtue of Canon 904 of the Code of Canon Law, the bishop's measure allows the priest to "celebrate Mass without the attendance of faithful."
The measure also exhorted Fr Farinello "to adhere at all times to his condition as a baptized person and priest, unconditionally defending the full observance of Gospel values and the teachings of the ecclesiastical magisterium and social doctrine of the Church, particularly those relating to human rights, which include respect for life from the moment of conception, education, marriage and the family, the option for the poor, as well as avoiding any attitude that will injure ecclesial communion."
Bishop Novak's decision is in response to a request made by Fr Farinello, who informed the bishop that he hopes to participate in the forthcoming national elections as a Social Pole candidate. The priest had asked for leave from his pastoral duties, including celebrating public Masses.