November 16, 1992
Prospero Penados del Barrio
Arzobispo de Guatemala
Ciudad de Guatemala
FAX: (502)(2) 2838
I have learned of the accusations against members of your staff, and even against you personally, recently made by high authorities of the Guatemalan government. From all I have read and heard, including the reports of our own Conference's delegations to your country, these public accusations are not only groundless and false but potentially dangerous as well.
It does seem strange, after all the years in which the Church in several Latin American countries has been active in defending human rights and pressing for peace talks between contending forces, that these same activities of the Church in Guatemala should be the object of harsh and false criticism.
I write today to express the full support and solidarity of this Conference for all that you and the other Bishops of Guatemala have accomplished and are continuing to do to defend the rights and dignity of each person. It is our prayer that your society, still tragically divided, will soon enjoy the blessings of true peace, justice, and reconciliation.
Fraternally yours in Christ,
Most Reverend John R. Roach
Archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis
Chairman, Committee on International Policy