Ahead of Columbus Day, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador wrote a two-page letter that was tweeted on Saturday calling for an apology from Pope Francis for what he believes is the Church’s supposed role in conquest atrocities committed in the 1500s and for a statement of support for excommunicated Mexican revolutionary Miguel Hidalgo.
“The Catholic Church should make a public apology for the offensive atrocities that Indigenous people suffered.”
Obrador also called for the Church to make a “sincere commitment we will never, ever, commit disrespectful acts to their beliefs, cultures, and let alone be judged or marginalized on economic or racism grounds.”
On his papal visit to Mexico in 2016, Pope Francis acknowledged mistreatment of indigenous people and extended a pastoral embrace to them, calling for social justice.
“On many occasions, in a systematic and organized way, your people have been misunderstood and excluded from society. Some have considered your values, culture and traditions to be inferior. Others, intoxicated by power, money and market trends, have stolen your lands or contaminated them. How worthwhile it would be for each of us to examine our conscience and learn to say, ‘Forgive me!'”
The Holy See has made no comment on the letter by Obrador.