EUROPE/ITALY - Fr. Andrea Santoro: man, believer, a pastor and a witness of the Gospel

Monday, 28 November 2016 martyrs   evangelization   ecumenicalism  

Associazione don Andrea Santoro

Rome (Agenzia Fides) - "What happened a decade ago on February 5th in Trabzon church moved and wounded beyond the confines of the Diocese of Rome and the Vicariate of Anatolia in Turkey, but it is a wound from which spiritual good for many is budding, as also Pope Francis recalled during a general audience. Of these signs of the Spirit the Church of Rome is called to question and reflect, but each of us has to feed the flame kindled in the heart by the Lord thanks to the sacrifice of Fr. Andrea". These are the words of Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, during the Mass he presided yesterday at the Basilica of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme in Rome, at the conclusion of the initiatives held on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of Fr. Andrea’s death.
Fr. Andrea Santoro, a Fidei donum priest of the Diocese of Rome, was killed in Trabzon (Turkey) on February 5, 2006 while he was praying in Sancta Maria Kilisesi church, which he had been entrusted. In 2003 he founded the Association "Window for the Middle East": a group dedicated to the study, prayer and dialogue to facilitate the encounter between the Western world and the Middle East (see Fides 06/02/2006; 07/02/2006 ; 08/02/2006; 09/02/2006; 10/02/2006).
Cardinal Sandri emphasized in his homily that Father Andrea "managed to light the fire of the Word of God and of charity in the community which he led. The events that were organized in collaboration with the Vicariate of Rome in this year enabled us to focus on the salient features of his profile as a man, believer, pastor and witness of the Gospel".
In the ten years since his violent death, many have wanted to know and deepen his figure and spirituality, "but what strikes us - said the Cardinal - is how even people who had never had anything to do with him wanted to get to know him, or someone, as a priest, wanted to retrace the steps toward the East". (SL) (Agenzia Fides 28/11/2016)