Venezuela's cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino walks after a meeting of a conclave to elect a new pope on March 4, 2013 at the Vatican. The Vatican meetings will set the date for the start of the conclave this month and help identify candidates among the cardinals to be the next leader of the world's 1.2 billion Catholics. AFP PHOTO / ALBERTO PIZZOLI

His Eminence Cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino, Archbishop of Caracas, who was joined in his message by his four auxiliary bishops, encouraged transparent elections the results of which the citizenry could trust, in order to alleviate the grave crisis affecting the country. His Beatitude Cardinal Urosa conveyed that the year 2017 was very tragic for Venezuela, marked by political violence with a terrible toll of more than 120 persons killed in attacks on demonstrations held by the people.

As reported by Catholic News Agency, His Eminence Cardinal Urosa remarked that “In order to resolve this situation, which has its root in the political problem, it is necessary to hold the presidential elections for which the constitution calls. But for that, it is necessary to guarantee fair and reasonable conditions for elections with transparency and whose results the people can trust.”

In the conclusion of the message, the bishops asked God that the political leaders, whether in the ruling party or in the opposition, may have the light and strength to act on behalf of the common good, with a truly patriotic spirit, to resolve the pending problems.