|Apostles & Martyrs 2008|
|Written by Sherry|
|Tuesday, 30 December 2008 10:28|
At least 20 church workers were killed in 2008, demonstrating that Catholic men and women -- bishops, priests, religious and laity -- continue placing their lives at risk in order to proclaim the Gospel and serve the poor, said the Vatican's Fides news agency.
Chaldean Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho of Mosul, Iraq, led Fides' 2008 list. The 65-year-old archbishop was kidnapped Feb. 29 in an attack that left his driver and two bodyguards dead. His body was recovered two weeks later after the kidnappers told Catholic leaders in Iraq where he had been buried. For more on the aftermath, go here.
The last name on the list is that of Boduin Ntamenya, 52, who was killed Dec. 15 in Rutshuru, Congo. The husband and father of six children worked for an Italian Catholic aid agency running schools in the war-torn country. Ntamenya and a driver were visiting the schools in the region to ensure they survived recent fighting when four armed men opened fire on their vehicle. Ntamenya died on the way to the hospital; the driver was wounded in the hand and the side.
From the beginning of 2001 to the end of 2008, at least 193 church workers were killed, Fides said, adding that the actual total is likely to be higher because the figures include only missionaries whose violent deaths were reported to the evangelization congregation.
A communion of saints, indeed.