Pope Francis has confirmed that Archbishop Romero died as a martyr, after the theologians at the Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints agreed that Romero was killed in “hatred of the faith”. The Pope’s declaration means that the announcement of his beatification could happen shortly.
CAFOD worked closely with Archbishop Romero during the 1970s, supporting his famous radio broadcasts, which – during a time of heavy press censorship – were often the only means by which communities in El Salvador knew the truth about the atrocities occurring in their country.
A vocal critic of the El Salvador’s military government, Archbishop Romero was assassinated on 24 March 1980, while celebrating Mass in San Salvador. In the years since, he has been an inspirational figure for staff, partners and supporters at CAFOD, and for millions of Catholics around the world.
CAFOD Director Chris Bain said: “The reason that people continue to hold Romero in such high regard is obvious. He didn’t simply talk about the need to love your neighbour, but courageously denounced the violence and named the injustices that plagued his country. He reminded us that Christ is found in people living in poverty, and that we cannot ignore the suffering of our brothers and sisters in need.”
Funded by Catholic communities in England and Wales, our partners in El Salvador continue to work helping farmers to improve their crops, assisting communities in reducing the risk of disasters, supporting people living with HIV, building peace, defending human rights and trying to create a more just society.