The tragedy of the disappeared continues to haunt families of our diocese. The pastoral care extended so generously by so many priests to the families concerned has helped them a lot and has been greatly appreciated. They have told me that the fact of having the names of their dear ones mentioned and prayed for by name was a great consolation.

I ask that priests continue to pray for the relatives of the disappeared who have suffered so much and whose hearts are filled with such pain, pain caused by seeing their hopes raised only to be later dashed. I request that you continue to ask your parishioners, if considered appropriate, to pray that these victims be released from their particular imprisonment in time for the Great Jubilee. Jubilee is a time when all go back to their homeland, return to their roots and renew their faith and commitment to God. To enable all to do this, prisoners are released and debts are cancelled. It is a time of peace and goodwill.

So, I see it as appropriate to call at this time on anyone who has any information with regard to the location of the bodies of the disappeared to make that information available so as to help in securing their speedy return to their relatives for proper and respectful burial. I ask that prayers be offered that those with any such information may be enabled to overcome their fears and pass on whatever information they have.

We must all do everything in our power to ensure that the suffering of these families may be brought to an end as quickly as possible so that they can give their loved ones a Christian burial and so pick up the pieces of their lives again.

August 14, 1999