Life of Archbishop Oscar Romeo

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  • Topic: Óscar Romero, Bishop, Rutilio Grande
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  • Published : May 21, 2013
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Life of Archbishop Oscar Romeo

Important years in the life of Archbishop Oscar Romeo:
* 1917, August 15 Oscar Arnulfo Romero y Galdámez was born in Ciudad barrios, El Salvador. His father apprenticed him to a carpenter when he was 13, but the young Romero felt a vocation for the Catholic priesthood and left home the following year to enter the seminary. * 1930 He declared he had a vocation to the priesthood.

* 1942 He was ordained priest, and returned to El Salvador in 1944. He was a parish priest and also wrote in the diocesan newspaper. He was known as a quiet, conservative man. He became auxiliary bishop of El Salvador in 1970 and bishop of a rural parish in 1974. * 1977 He was made Archbishop of El Salvador, a 'safe' appointment, someone who would maintain the status quo. Within three weeks this had changed. The Church was entering into a time of persecution because of new ideas which were beginning to be talked about and acted upon by those working with and for the poor. Their talk of justice threatened the way of life of the rich and powerful. On 12th March a radical priest and friend of Oscar’s, Father Rutilio Grande, was brutally murdered in Aguilares. He had been living in poverty alongside landless peasants, believing this is what Jesus would have done. Romero was shocked and decided to act. He ordered three days of mourning and a funeral mass in the cathedral, despite advice to the contrary. Further actions followed. * 1979 Oscar visited the Pope in Rome and outlined to him, with evidence, the injustices which were part of life in El Salvador. He did not have much support within the church, and was under threat from those outside it. He spoke out against the USA-financed security forces, and became too much of a threat to the government. * 1980 He was shot dead while celebrating mass. His last words were: 'May God have mercy on the assassin.' * 1981 Oscar Romero was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize (having been nominated...
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