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2014-05-13

OCEANIA/PAPUA NEW GUINEA - A priest and a lay extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist have been killed

Port Moresby (Agenzia Fides) - A Catholic priest and a layman of the diocese of Bereina were killed on Sunday, May 4, for reasons which are still unclear, while they were walking in a remote area of the diocese. We are talking about Fr. Gerry Maria Inau and Benedict, a lay extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist. The news, sent to Fides by the communications office of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands, was confirmed by the Vicar General of the Diocese of Bereina who, with another priest, arrived on the spot with a police helicopter. The Bishop of Bereina and the other bishops are in New Zealand for the Assembly of Bishops of Oceania, from May 12 to 16.
Fr. George Licini PIME, of the Communications Office of the Episcopal Conference says "it will take time to collect testimonies from locals and the police to reconstruct what happened". The two are perhaps victims of a tribal conflict that has been going on in the last few years. In a note sent to Fides, Fr. Casmiro Kito MSC, who knew Fr. Gerry says: "He was a priest of great faith. He had a big heart for his people and served them with love. May his death be a sacrifice for peace between the tribes of the Kunimaipa Valley". (PA) (Agenzia Fides 13/05/2014)

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