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Bishops of El Salvador announce the beatification of four martyrs

The bishops of El Salvador announced that two priests: Rutio Grande García and Fray Cosme Spessotto, and two laypersons: Manuel Solórzano and Nelson Lemus, will be beatified on the 22nd of January of 2022. The four men are martyrs of the Catholic Church.

In February of 2020, Pope Francis authorised the publication of a decree which recognises that the four men are martyrs of the Christian Church.

In a communiqué, published on the 27th of August, the bishops of El Salvador announced with joy that the four martyrs would be beatified on the 22nd of January, 2022, by Cardinal Gregorio Rosa Chávez, auxiliary bishop of San Salvador who Pope Francis has designated for this role.

“We thank God and Pope Francis for this enormous gift, the rasing of our four martyrs to the altars, named Rutilio, Nelson, Manuel and Cosme. We welcome everyone to live with us this great moment”, write the bishops.

The Jesuit Rutilio Grande was born on the 5th of July of 1928 in El Paisnal, El Salvador. He studied and taught at the seminary of San José de la Montaña in San Salvador and was the rector of the Externado de San José.

From the 24th of September of 1972, he was parish priest of the parish of Aguilares. On the 12th of March of 1977, Father Grande was travelling in a car, accompanied by seventy-two-year-old Manuel Solorzano and sixteen-year-old Nelson Rutilio Lemus, to celebrate a Mass in the parish of El Panisal. Their car was ambushed, and the three men in the car were shot dead.

Fray Cosme Spessotto was born on the 28th of January in 1923 in Mansué, Italy. He went to El Salvador in 1950, where he built a church and founded a parish school for more than one thousand children.

Both the guerilla and the armed forces of El Salvador wanted to take over the church where Spessotto served as a parish priest for twenty-seven years. He refused to hand over the building for military purposes. As a result, he was murdered in his own church on the 14th of July in 1980 while praying before celebrating Mass.

Source: ACI Prensa

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