Indonesian bishops issue anti-corruption warning

The Indonesian bishops have launched a strong appeal for a personal commitment against corruption in their Lenten pastoral letter.

Fr Aloys Budi Purnomo Pr, a diocesan priest of Semarang Archdiocese in Central Java, said the problem must be seen in the current scenario, where corruption, nepotism and collusion are rife in social life.

Even the Supreme Court has not been spared, "with Probosutedjo, an important businessman and cousin of the former president, Soeharto, having to fork out at least 16 billion rupiah [AU$2.34 million] to persuade some judges to 'forget' his corruption charges."

The issue seems to be closely linked to the theme proposed in 2005: "Have I been fair enough to others?"

The Cardinal of Jakarta, Julius Darmaatmadja, said corruption is a symptom of dishonesty. He who steals without qualms what is not his is dishonest, and saying falsehoods is corrupt. He said in his pastoral letter: "Dishonesty takes place in almost every aspect of our daily lives."

The pastoral call to greater honesty with ourselves and towards others has awakened much positive interest among Catholics. "The theme of 'am I corrupt too?' is key for the contemporary situation of Indonesia," said Agus Mulyana, a catholic and social activist in Jakarta.

As part of the campaign, parishes will distribute anti-corruption stickers to their parishioners. Some parishes plan to hold social activities such as free health care and collection of supplies for those in need.

Lent: Indonesian bishops issue strong anti-corruption warning (AsiaNews.it 6/3/06)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Indonesian Catholic Bishops Conference

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7 Mar 2006