Catholic parishioners of León criticized the fact that their bishop, Sócrates René Sándigo Jirón, remains silent in the face of the persecution of the priests of his Diocese. “We do not know what is happening with the Bishop, why does he continue to keep quiet about these injustices? There are several priests who have abandoned their parishes and communities just because they are not liked by this repressive regime,” complained Alejandro Núñez, a member of La Merced parish.
The repression that the church is experiencing in these times is not a new issue for Bishop Sándigo. He has remained silent in the face of the threats suffered by the priests, with whom he even recently met in the formation of the clergy of his diocese, held in Chinandega.
A list of priests from the Diocese of León are in the crosshairs of the Ortega dictatorship. A persecution that does not stop and forces them to forcibly and involuntarily leave Nicaragua. The repressive measure has been taking place in a climate of harassment, offenses, desecration of temples, insults and death threats against religious.
siege “no quarter”»
The siege by Ortega paramilitaries and police has increased the Catholic temples belonging to the Diocese of León. In each religious celebration there is “one ear” that is aware of the message that the priest transmits during the homily to his parishioners, warned a member of the community of the Immaculate Conception of Mary parish, in León.
He assured that the parish priests suffer harassment and that they are constantly called to declare to the Police, for disregarding the orders imposed by the regime that has prohibited processions and celebration of the Eucharist in some churches in rural areas.
“Just by shouting Viva Cristo Rey, Viva Nicaragua or asking for exiles, political prisoners, or making a comment on social networks about the situation the church is going through, one is already in the crosshairs of the regime,” says the parishioner. who recently witnessed a death threat received by a priest from this Diocese.
During the celebration of the liturgy, the Catholic parishioners in the Metropolitan Cathedral do not abandon their Catholic convictions, despite the silence of their bishop before the persecution of the Ortega regime.
The member of the religious community refers to what happened to the priest Douglas Ramón Guevara Ávila, parish priest of the Inmaculada Concepción de María temple, who was forced to leave his land and go into exile due to the constant threats he received from the León Police.
“Our parish priest’s crime was to have shown solidarity with the Sisters of the Poor Fraternity of Jesus Christ who were kidnapped by the dictatorship at the beginning of July from their home in León,” says Juanita, a member of that church.
Juanita showed the publication that the priest had shared on his social network where they denounced the way in which the Police had entered to remove the nuns. “Surely that made them angry and was the pretext to attack,” she said.
Father Guevara was constant on social networks. He was seen meeting with catechists, communities, and parishioners at all church events. «I have been the confessor of these sisters. May the Lord Jesus protect you and the Blessed Virgin Mary accompany you to your new mission,” the Nicaraguan priest posted.
«You have to be persistent in prayer as our parish priest told us. Today, never more, the people must continue praying to defeat the devil, “commented a catechist by her side.
Church attacked on a day of Prayer for the freedom of Bishop
From the early hours of Sunday morning, patrols and paramilitaries on motorcycles surrounded the temples of León and Chinandega. This July 16, the Organization “Action Give Life to Nicaragua” called for a World Day of Prayer for Bishop Rolando Álvarez and for the country.
“Thousands of us have joined in prayer, raising their prayers to the creator to overcome religious persecution and for the freedom of Monsignor Rolando Álvarez, priest and political prisoner of Ortega,” said Blessed Concepción Martínez.
“Although Monsignor Álvarez is in jail, his voice continues to be heard through his prayers and resistance. His actions are those of a true Christian and his heroism has transcended borders, “said young Roberto López on his side.
«The stones speak for him, because his name is heard in every corner of the world. His name is making a pilgrimage even on social networks, whether the dictatorship likes it or not, “commented a fervent Catholic.
In less than a week, the Ortega y Murillo regime denied entry to the country to Father Juan Carlos Sánchez, from the San Francisco parish in Managua; Father Guevara was forced into exile, and the priest Fernando Zamora, from Siuna, was imprisoned. While Bishop Rolando Álvarez and other priests continue to be kidnapped and imprisoned.
By: United Voices.