AMERICA/VENEZUELA - COVID-19: 41 priests and 4 Bishops have died in the country since March 2020

Tuesday, 14 December 2021 coronavirus   episcopal conferences  


Caracas (Agenzia Fides) - From March 2020 to December 13, 2021, 413 priests and 26 Bishops were infected with COVID-19 in Venezuela: 41 priests and 4 Bishops died. This is what the Venezuelan Bishops' Conference (CEV) announced by publishing statistical data updated to December 13, 2021. In 38 of the 41 ecclesiastical districts of Venezuela, members of the clergy contracted the infection with COVID-19, but it was only in 17 dioceses that there were deaths due to COVID-19 or related causes. The ages of those who died ranged from 40 to 90, with an average age of 61. The youngest priest who died was 36 years old. The 4 deceased bishops (three of whom are emeritus) are: Mgr Cástor Oswaldo Azuaje, 69, Bishop of the diocese of Trujillo, who died on January 8, 2021; Bishop César Ortega, 82, Bishop Emeritus of Barcelona, died on April 9, 2021; Bishop Tulio Chirivella, 88, Archbishop Emeritus of Barquisimeto, died on April 11, 2021; Cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino, 79, Archbishop Emeritus of Caracas, who died on September 23, 2021. Currently, the Church of Venezuela has 2,068 priests, 345 permanent deacons and 60 bishops (41 ordinary, 3 auxiliaries and 16 emeritus). "In the midst of the global crisis in the face of the pandemic, priests are not exempt from the risks of contracting COVID-19, at a time when people seek consolation of the spirit and the closeness of faith, for which priests offer their service to the Church, "writes the Venezuelan Bishops' Conference, recalling that since the arrival of COVID-19 in the country, CEV has always urged the entire population to respect the guidelines and recommendations on biosecurity. (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 14/12/2021)