(San Salvador) Is 2015 the year of Oscar Arnulfo Romero? "Leading circles of the Church of El Salvador are confident that 2015 will be 'el año' for the beatification of the Archbishop of San Salvador, Oscar Arnulfo Romero, assassinated in 1980." They no longer ask themselves whether the beatification will come, but are already discussing the details of where and how the ceremony will take place and who will preside over it, "the blog Super martyrio is dedicated to the process of beatification of Archbishop Romero (1917-1980).
On New Year's Eve was an interview with the Auxiliary Bishop of San Salvaddor, Msgr. Gregoria Rosa Chavez was given to Canale 21 and aired. Canale 21 is a media network of three television channels and a dozen radio stations, which was created by Salvadoran entrepreneurs of Palestinian origin. Auxiliary Bishop Chavez said that everything had been done, what needs to be done. Actually, he expects a speedy beatification: "The Pope believes the sanctity of Monsignor Romero and is sure that the step is set ... The good news is that it comes."
Auxiliary Bishop Chavez, who was employed in the Diocesan High School of San Miguel and worked for Romero, referred to the trip planned for September by Pope Francis to the United States and Mexico. From there it is only a "jump" to San Salvador, and perhaps the Pope could come "for Romero".
Carlos Colorado, author of Super martyrio, is already certain that Pope Francis will personally enact the beatification in San Salvador: "Very likely it will take place in the period between mid-February and mid-March" An "appropriate moment" could also be the cardinal consistory of the 12-15th of February in Rome, say Colorado.
Beatification Process under Benedict XVI. Stopped
The blog called at the same time for a novena for a positive conclusion of the beatification process. . A Novena to the Three Kings, which began on December 29, Memorial of Saint Thomas Becket wrote Super martyrio: Becket was the "last bishop murdered (1170) at the altar before Bishop Romero."
The beatification of the Salvadoran Archbishop had been put on hold under Pope Benedict XVI. The exact reasons for this are not known. It is speculated that there were fundamental concerns, or whether he wanted to prevent a political appropriation of Romero's image. The archbishop was shot by a right-wing military and therefore became an icon of the political left, especially outside El Salvador, where more than superficial knowledge of the Central American country is hard to come by, but over which is laid the right-left-template. In Italy there are many of left local establishments named after Archbishop Romero, streets, squares and public buildings offer testimony of the trial of a political "beatification".
This occurred simultaneously with Romero's assassination at the risk that for the canonization had less to do with personal virtues, but more with the "right" disposition of the person concerned by certain political circles. It was in Europe that the same leftist circles collected the money for the Cardenal brothers and the Sandinista regime in Nicaragua, who claimed Archbishop Romero for themselves. At least after to his murder.
Romero: "They will kill me, I do not know whether the right or the left"
However, the situation in El Salvador and the Church's position was much more differentiated than a filtered left iconography in distant Europe. Archbishop Romero seemed to be sure of being murdered in a premonition. However, he was not sure whether he would be killed by his enemies on the left or right (see report in German Oscar Romero, 30 years after his martyrdom - "They will kill me, I do not know whether the right or the left" ).
Romero's statement is hardly mentioned because it does not fit into a black and white scheme. Would you remember him in Europe if he had been executed by order of the leftists? Certainly he would be otherwise remembered especially in other circles, even within the Catholic Church.
There is a warning about the image of Archbishop Oscar Arnulfo Romero. This is perhaps the reason why Pope Benedict XVI. distanced the beatification or at least to save it for a later, less politically charged time. What was Archbishop Romero's position to liberation theology, really? Is his criticism of the military dictatorship to be confused with approval of the liberation theology?
Since the election of Pope Francis, voices have not stopped, who are announcing an imminent beatification. Because he is Latin American? Because a "climatic" match is assumed between Romero and Bergoglio or at least claimed? Or because the consistency between political promoters of the Romero-memorial and the new Pope, or is simply assumed by the former?
In April 2013, Pope Francis did announce shortly after the resumption of the beatification process, warning Jesus Delgado Vicar General of San Salvador against a " political instrumentalization" of Archbishop Romero.
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
image: Super martyrio / Giovani Emissione
image: Super martyrio / Giovani Emissione
Trans: Tancred firstname.lastname@example.org