Letter to Ambassador of Uruguay Caldas on Closing of Catholic Journal, Vispera, July 30, 1975

Year Published
  • 2014
  • English

July 30, 1975

His Excellency Brig. Gen. Jose Perez Caldas
Ambassador of Uruguay to the United States
1918 F Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20006

Dear Mr. Ambassador:

The internationally-respected Catholic journal Vispera, published until April of this year in Montevideo, was forcibly closed down permanently by executive decree of the Government of Uruguay on April 30. Prior to its official closing, the editor of Vispera, Dr. Hector Borrat, was held incommunicado by police authorities from April 15-25 without formal charges being placed against him.

In the executive decree forbidding Vispera ever to publish again, considerable attention is given to the magazine's external sources of financial assistance, essentially the development assistance agencies of various national conferences of Catholic bishops. The decree implies that these agencies are somehow financing, in the words of the decree, "subversive movements at work in Latin America and other continents to destroy legitimate institutional order and implant regimes which deny the rights of man and of democracy."

Since the United States Catholic Conference is one of the agencies which has provided some financial assistance to Vispera and since Dr. Borrat has visited the United States as a guest of the Catholic Conference, I would appreciate learning from you, at your earliest convenience, in what sense Dr. Borrat, Vispera or the Catholic aid agencies of Europe and North America are to be considered subversive or destructive of legitimate institutional order.

Very sincerely yours,

Bishop James S. Rausch
General Secretary
United States Catholic Conference

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