Hispanic bishops: We feel `invisible'
by Nan Cobbey and Carol Barnwell
``It's a general attitude, a tone,'' said Bishop Frade, who complained about insufficient translators and translations. Although pleased and ``humbled'' to be part of the team planning the Bible study for the conference, Bishop Sergio Carranza-Gomez (Mexico) said:``We feel ignored.''
In his view, the agenda at the conference seems centred on Africa or the Northern Hemisphere. ``We don't feel part of the Third World like Africa,'' said Bishop CarranzaGomez. ``We are caught in the middle.''
``We are always the invisible Anglicans,'' Bishop Leo Frade (Honduras) declared on Thursday afternoon as Hispanic bishops from 20 dioceses gathered to have their photograph taken behind Rutherford College, and to make a statement to the press.
Bishop Frade said the Hispanic bishops have met twice during the Lambeth Conference. At both meetings they shared a sense of being left out.
Bishop Carlos Lopez-Lozano, of the Spanish Reformed Episcopal Church, said he was disappointed that so little Latin music was performed.
``It practically doesn't exist in the liturgies,'' he said. ``We feel a little discriminated against...that our point of view as Latinos is not particularly understood. We haven't as much influence in this conference as the North Americans and British.''
Bishop Julio Holguin-Khoury (Dominican Republic) said with a grin: ``We are like Cinderella--we're still in the kitchen.''
Bishop Holguin added that he was pleased with the contacts he has made with bishops from around the world, which he called ``a blessing.'' But he, too, lamented the dearth of translators.``Most of life here is spent in small groups'' where translators are unavailable. His Bible study included six bishops from Africa and one from Canada in addition to himself and the accents were ``very difficult'' to understand, he said.
Bishop Hector Tito Zavala (Chile), attending his first Lambeth Conference, said he hopes Latin American bishops would be more involved in both the issues and planning of the Conference next time.
The bishops hope to initiate a call for a special millennium project during the Conference this week.
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