The Long Road to an Andean Catholic Clergy: From Solórzano to Pèlach i Feliú

The Long Road to an Andean Catholic Clergy: From Solórzano to Pèlach i Feliú
14 March 2019, 5.30pm - 7.30pm
Room 333, UCL Rockefeller Building, 21 University Street, London WC1E 6DE

Christine Lee, St Andrews 

The development of a native clergy in the Andes has long been called for but only recently achieved. In the early colonial period, doubts about the authenticity of Andean conversion to Catholicism—doubts which were rooted in mainstream Spanish skepticism of and disdain for Andean culture and customs—served to prevent the ordination of native Andeans. The underlying thread of anti-Andean ethnic discrimination continued to hinder the incorporation of indigenous Andeans into the clergy, and it was only within the last fifty years that a native clergy has developed in the southern Andes in the Peruvian diocese of Abancay. The second bishop of Abancay, Mons Enrique Pèlach i Feliú, founded the diocese’s first seminary in 1977 and, in contrast with previous generations of foreign clergy in this area, actively promoted local Catholic devotions and recruited local boys for the priesthood. Today, the diocese of Abancay in the south-central Peruvian Andes boasts its first generation of native clergy, made up entirely of men who were born and raised in the diocese in which they now serve, and which promises a new institutional relationship between what it has historically meant to be Andean and what it has meant to be Catholic

All are welcome. Attendance is free.

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Olga Jimenez
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