The Pope Visits Mexico: An Example for the Chinese in Tibet?

February 16, 2016

I watched the Pope give his Mass on Telemondo, in Spanish. What an astonishing event.

There in Mayan traditional costumes were hundreds of the faithful. On the platform where the mass was to be held, women came and spoke to the Pope in indigenous languages.

The music was not the high church music of Europe, nor the Gregorian chant of the monastic tradition in Europe, but the music of Popol Vuh, the peoples, with a little of the mariachi tradition of guitars and clarinets thrown in. This was the inclusive church. It was the church of liberation theology.

The pope spoke with an awareness of history. The Mayans addressed him with the Mayan word for Father, Totec, not Papa, as is the custom in Rome.

The Faithful came to the altar and read the liturgy in indigenous languages, alongside the Spanish liturgy.

It was quite amazing and it made me think of Tibet. There the indigenous people, the Tibetans, have been outnumbered by the in-migration of Han Chinese and the Chinese language has replaced the Tibetan language as the official language. History repeats itself on the other side of the world, in Asia.

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