EXCERPTS OF THE ADDRESS OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS
TO THE COMMUNITY OF THE
PONTIFICAL PIUS LATIN AMERICAN COLLEGE
Thursday, 15 November 2018
One of the phenomena currently afflicting the continent is cultural fragmentation, the polarization of the social fabric and the loss of roots. This is exacerbated when arguments are fomented that divide and propagate different types of confrontations and hatred towards those who “are not one of us”, even importing cultural models that have little or nothing to do with our history and identity and that, far from combining in new syntheses as in the past, end up uprooting our cultures from their richest autochthonous traditions. New generations uprooted and fragmented! The Church is not external to this situation and is exposed to this temptation; since she is subject to the same environment, she runs the risk of becoming disoriented by falling prey to one form of polarization or another, or becoming uprooted if one forgets that the vocation is a meeting ground. The invasion of ideological colonization is also suffered in the Church.
Our continent has managed to capture in its tradition and in its memory a reality: the love of Christ and of Christ can not manifest itself except in passion for life and for the destiny of our peoples, and especially solidarity with the poorest, the suffering and those in need ...
Captivated by Jesus and members of His Body, we integrate fully into society, share life with everyone, listen to their concerns ... rejoice with those who are happy, mourn with those who mourn and offer every Eucharist for all those faces that were entrusted to us (see Apostolic Exhortation, Evangelii gaudium, 269-270).
Hence, we it is providential to be able to link this anniversary with the canonization of Saint Oscar Romero, former student of your institution and living sign of the fruitfulness and sanctity of the Latin American Church. A man rooted in the Word of God and in the hearts of his people. This reality allows us to make contact with that long chain of witnesses in which we are invited to place our roots and take inspiration from every day, especially in this time while you are “away from home”. Do not fear holiness, and do not fear spending your life for your people.
 Cf. S. Óscar Romero, IV Pastoral Letter – Mission of the Church in the midst of the crisis in the country (6 August 1979), 23.