Rev Chava’s Reflections on the Sainthood of Oscar Romero and the RC Church
Once again we present here the insightful and beautiful reflections of Rev. Chava Redonnet. She is discussing the recent actions of the Vatican to name Oscar Romero as martyred, a status that can lead to sainthood if a miracle can be claimed. I have no doubt that many miracles will be claimed for this man of God who walked with and stood with the poor and whose love, a miracle indeed, touched the lives of so many.
Rev. Dr. Judy Lee, RCWP
Good Shepherd Inclusive Catholic Community Fort Myers, Florida
Oscar Romero Inclusive Catholic Church
Bulletin for Sunday, February 8, 2015
Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time
This past November when Rachel McGuire and I were in El Salvador, we got
word that Oscar Romero would be named a saint in 2015. By the time we left
that had already proved to be just a rumor, but it was pretty exciting for
a few days, especially since we had just visited Romero’s tomb and his
little house. There he is already called “San Romero,” as we call him here
in our little church.
For me it was like a nudge of encouragement from God: Keep on going! …but
Baptist Rachel was mostly exasperated. “Why does anyone need the Vatican to
tell them he’s a saint?” she would ask. Indeed, he’s been recognized as the
people’s saint in El Salvador ever since he was assassinated at the altar
almost 35 years ago. The Anglicans put a statue of him on the front of
Westminster Abbey in 1998, recognizing him as a 20th century martyr.
This week the Vatican announced that at long last it is recognizing Oscar
Romero as a martyr. This is good news for a number of reasons. It does
clear the way to being recognized as a saint, but it also opens the door
for the recognition of other Salvadoran martyrs like Rutilio Grande, the
four North American church women killed in 1980, the Jesuits of the UCA,
their housekeeper and her daughter, killed in 1989 – and thousands of
others whose names are not widely known. I do not know if that will happen
but the possibility is there.
There is something more. Monseñor Romero was killed because he was living
the gospel by walking with the poor and oppressed people of El Salvador. By
naming him a martyr, the church is finally agreeing that yes, he was living
the gospel, he was following Jesus by standing with the oppressed and not
with the powers that be.
And that’s what’s really exciting, here. Monseñor Romero is not more a
martyr than he was last week, just because Rome says he’s one. He will not
be more a saint than he is now when he is finally recognized as one. The
change is in the church. By recognizing Romero as a martyr, and eventually
as a saint, the church is moving closer to being what it ought to be: the
church that “stands with the poor, in order to denounce from the place of
the poor the injustice that is committed against them.”
“Romero is an uncomfortable saint. A saint that destabilizes us, that
shakes our comforts, forcing us to a profound examination of conscience,
that’s why many did not like him, because he was a saint very demanding
with his testimony.”
“The church needs to be like Romero, committed to the poor, free,
humble,ready to serve, sincere and courageous when comes time to defend
those that need to be defended”.
– – Mons. Gregorio Rosa Chavez, Auxiliary
Bishop of San Salvador
Thank you, God of Love, for this movement, this opening that lets in your
May it be a blessing to many.
Love to all ,
Oscar Romero Church
Rev. Chava Reddonet,Pastor