Pope says Archbishop Romero cause proceeding well

Pope Francis has assured the bishops of El Salvador that the cause for sainthood of murdered Archbishop Oscar Romero is proceeding well.

The bishops reportedly asked him to come to El Salvador to preside personally over the archbishop’s hoped-for beatification.

Archbishop Jose Escobar Alas said he and three other Salvadoran bishops met the Pope at the Vatican this month to discuss Archbishop Romero’s cause.

“We ask the Lord for the speedy beatification of Archbishop Romero and that the Pope come here” to celebrate the ceremony, Archbishop Escobar said.

The Pope told the Salvadoran bishops that he was pleased the process was moving ahead, but he gave no indication of when it would be completed, the archbishop told reporters.

Archbishop Romero, the archbishop of San Salvador, was shot dead on March 24, 1980, while celebrating Mass in a hospital.

This was one day after he delivered a homily calling on Salvadoran soldiers to stop enforcing government repression and human rights violations.

Pope John Paul II gave him the title “servant of God” in 1997, and the cause for his canonisation began.

But it stalled under the papacy of Benedict XVI as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith studied Archbishop Romero’s writings.

This was amid wider debate over whether he had been killed for his faith or for political reasons.

Pope Francis revived the cause soon after he was elected last year.

In 2013, Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, president of the Pontifical Council for the Family and official promoter of Archbishop Romero’s cause, said the process had been “unblocked”, but gave no further details.

Before Archbishop Romero can be beatified, Pope Francis must officially recognise him as a martyr or officially recognise a miracle received through his intercession.

Recent reports in several languages had suggested that an announcement about Archbishop Romero’s beatification was near.


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