Crossing Swords: Politics and Religion in Mexico

By Roderic Ai Camp | Go to book overview

Mexico, as we have seen, also has produced a more autonomous Church without direct financial links to the government. Although it often seeks and receives funding from abroad, these funds appear to be given without any strings. The ability of the Church to operate independently of the state, especially in financial terms, strengthens its ability as an institution to serve its constituency's interests, especially if it confronts the state's position.

The Church further strengthened its position through personal and institutional linkages with the U.S. Catholic hierarchy, notably along the border, but elsewhere, including the South, as well. The Church is willing to use its ties to the United States to express a position independent of the Mexican government, or it may also help the government improve its international position vis-à-vis the United States on important domestic, economic issues. Regardless of how the Church is involved, its actions demonstrate that it is a significant, complex actor in Mexican affairs, and that if the situation demands that it perform secular assignments in the interest of the laity, especially the poor, Church leadership is willing to accept such a task.


NOTES
1.
John L. McKenzie, The Roman Catholic Church ( New York: Holt, Rinehart, 1969), 32-33.
4.
Brian Smith, "Religion and Social Change: Classical Theories and New Formulations in the Content of Recent Developments in Latin America," Latin American Research Review 10 ( 1975): 22.
5.
Edward L. Cleary, Crisis and Change: The Church in Latin America Today (Mary- knoll: Orbis Books, 1985), 13.
6.
Prigione was given the title Vatican delegate for most of his tenure because Mexico did not have formal relations with the Vatican. This term is used interchangeable with papal nuncio, the official diplomatic tide given to a Vatican ambassador.
7.
Mori de México, "Encuesta Semanal," November 27, 1992.
8.
George Grayson, The Church in Contemporary Mexico ( Washington: CSIS, 1992), 35.
9.
Personal interview with Archbishop Manuel Pérez Gil, Tlanepantla Diocese, Tlanep antla, México, February 18, 1991.
10.
Grupo Consultor Interdisciplinario, "Carta de política mexicana, las relaciones estado-iglesias," February 21, 1992, 9.
11.
For example, see José Luis Gaona Vega's statement that Prigione has "a view of the Church distinct from some northern bishops." La designación de Sandoval Iñiguez fue hecha por 'manos extrañas a la región, Punto, March 21, 1988, 11.
12.
Edward L. Cleary, Crisis and Change: The Church in Latin America Today, 15.
13.
Latin American Institutional Development: The Changing Catholic Church, Luigi Einaudi , ed. ( Santa Monica, Calif.: Rand Corporation, 1969), 13.
15.
Personal interview with Archbishop Rosendo Huesca, Puebla Archdiocese, Puebla, Puebla, July 16, 1993.

-251-

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Crossing Swords: Politics and Religion in Mexico
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Acknowledgments v
  • Contents vii
  • 1 - Church and State Foundations of Analysis 3
  • Notes 19
  • 2 - Historical Underpinnings and Reform Two Decades in Brief Repose 24
  • Notes 41
  • Issues Facing the Church Politics, Partisanship, and Development 50
  • Notes 70
  • 4 - Issues Facing the Church Moral and Spiritual Challenges 79
  • Notes 99
  • 5 - Religion, Politics, and the Laity 109
  • Notes 126
  • 6 - Becoming a Priest Why Mexicans Enter the Clergy 135
  • Notes 150
  • Educating the Clergy from Priest to Bishop 154
  • Notes 174
  • 8 - Who Are the Bishops? Consequences of Family and Place 180
  • Notes 199
  • 9 - Church-State Interlocks Informal Relations 202
  • Notes 222
  • 10 - Structure and Decision Making 228
  • Notes 251
  • 11 - Structure and Decision Making the Bishop in His Diocese 259
  • Notes 276
  • 12 - The Church Viewed through Political and Clerical Lenses 283
  • Notes 302
  • Appendix - Mexican Bishops 309
  • Bibliographic Essay 319
  • Index 327
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