AMERICA/NICARAGUA – Presbyteral Council of Granada: “It is time to be creative in order to continue to announce the Gospel with audacity”

AMERICA/NICARAGUA – Presbyteral Council of Granada: “It is time to be creative in order to continue to announce the Gospel with audacity”

Granada (Agenzia Fides) – “In the face of all adversity, we urge you not to be discouraged or to lose hope, comforted by faith in Jesus Christ, let us accept with love all that concerns his painful passion… We give thank God for the prayers, affection and solidarity of all of you in these difficult times, your participation unites us in the suffering due to the imprisonment of Fathers Manuel Salvador Garcia and Monsignor Leonardo Urbina, with them we hand over everything between the hands of the Lord”. This is the exhortation of the Presbyteral Council of the Diocese of Granada, meeting under the presidency of Bishop Jorge Solorzano Perez, addressed to all priests, men and women religious, committed lay people and all the Catholic faithful.
n the message of July 14 sent to Agenzia Fides, it is recalled that “for all of us, members of the Church, Jesus is the Teacher”, and in moments of exhaustion and fatigue he says to us: “Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest…” (Mt 11:28).
“Dear priests and faithful, let us continue to walk together, bishop, priests and faithful, with hope, without being discouraged, fulfilling the mission entrusted to us by the Lord… It is time to be creative in order to continue to announce the Gospel with audacity”, continues the text. Finally, they invite all parishes to promote days of prayer, “praying the Lord to have the firm certainty that the path of love, forgiveness and mercy will make possible the full reconciliation of the people of God”. During daily masses, priests and faithful are also encouraged to pray that priests Manuel Salvador Garcia and Monsignor Leonardo Urbina may be strong in spirit.
According to information gathered by Agenzia Fides, Father Manuel Salvador García, parish priest of Nandaime, was imprisoned on charges of endangering people and allegedly assaulting a woman. On July 13, Sandinista police arrested Monsignor Leonardo Urbina, parish priest of Perpetual Help of Boaco, on an alleged charge of sexual abuse.
Earlier this month, the Nicaraguan government ordered the cancellation of the legal status of 101 NGOs, including the “Missionnaires de la Charité” association. Parliament ratified the decision and the Sisters of Mother Teresa of Calcutta had to leave the country, where they were involved in various structures for children, young people and the elderly (see Fides 07/5/2022; 07/08/ 2022).
The Ortega regime has long since adopted repressive measures against the Church in Nicaragua, ordering, among other things, the closure of the television channel of the Episcopal Conference. On March 6, the Holy See received the communication that the Nicaraguan government had decided to withdraw the accreditation (approval) of Bishop Waldemar Stanislaw Sommertag, Apostolic Nuncio in Managua since 2018, asking him to leave the country immediately.
Monsignor Rolando Alvarez, bishop of the diocese of Matagalpa and apostolic administrator of Esteli, as well as Father Harvy Padilla, parish priest of San Juan Bautista in the city of Masaya, “live in an atmosphere of anxiety for their personal safety and the impossibility of exercising their right to live and celebrate their faith in an environment of peace and freedom” (cf. Fides 23, 24, 30/5/2022). (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 07/16/2022)


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