Iskenderun (Agenzia Fides) - Bishop Luigi Padovese, Apostolic Vicar of Anatolia, killed in Iskenderun on June 3, 2010, "contributed with many of his initiatives and theological conferences organized by him to make the spiritual and cultural heritage of Turkey outside the Turkish borders known. This is why I believe that he too deserves to have a road in Iskenderun dedicated to his name, as was done in Istanbul for apostolic Delegate Angelo Roncalli, who later became Pope John XXIII". This is the suggestive proposal made by Bishop Paolo Bizzeti sj, current apostolic Vicar of Anatolia, to honor the memory of his predecessor, 10 years after his violent death. The suggestion of Bishop Bizzeti, relaunched in a conversation with Agenzia Fides, comes just as the translation in Turkish of the homilies and pastoral letters of Padovese take place. The editorial initiative, entitled "Witness of the Good Shepherd" and edited by the lay consecrated Mariagrazia Zambon - Bishop Bizzeti reports to Fides - was supported by the Luigi Padovese Cultural Center of Cucciago (Como), and was carried out in collaboration with the publishing house of evangelical-Protestant origin "The Bible Company", based in Istanbul.
Born in 1947 in Milan to a family originally from the Veneto region, Luigi Padovese had entered the Order of Capuchin Friars Minor at the age of 18. Ordained a priest in 1973, after obtaining his doctorate from the Pontifical Gregorian University, in 1982 he had become a professor of patristics and history of spirituality at the then Pontifical Athenaeum Antonianum. In 1987 he became president of the Franciscan Institute of Spirituality, an institution he had directed and "formed" for 17 years. In 2004 he was elected apostolic Vicar of Anatolia. On June 3, 2010 he was stabbed to death by his driver, the 26-year-old Turk Murat Altun. The funeral ceremony, presided over by Cardinal Dionigi Tettamanzi, took place on June 14, 2010 in the Cathedral in Milan. (GV) (Agenzia Fides, 30/6/2020)