Bishop denounces killing of church lay minister in Leyte

June 16, 2024 - 3:16 PM
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File photo of Bro. Marcelino Combate. (Bishop Maceda/Facebook)

A Catholic bishop has joined in denouncing the spate of killings in Leyte province, where a lay minister was the latest victim.

Bishop Marvyn Maceda of San Jose de Antique deplored the murder of Marcelino Combate, a case which he said added to a growing list of “unsolved” killings in the area.

“Another life lost to senseless killings!” said Maceda, who was ordained and served as priest in the Diocese of Naval for more than 20 years before he became a bishop in 2019.

“I am alarmed because this is already the thirteenth killing in the 3rd district of Leyte since last year and many more cases of individuals gunned down years before,” he said.

The bishop said the victim was one of the lay ministers he recruited in 2011 when he was the parish priest at the Immaculate Conception Parish in Leyte town.

The 52-year old victim was gunned down by unknown assailants while riding on his motorcycle home on June 9, after celebrating the “Kasaulugan sa Pulong” in two remote barangays of the town.

According to him, Combate volunteered to serve the far-flung villages despite the security risks involved.

“I join my voice in condemning these dastardly acts and the cry for justice for Brod Mars and countless others who were killed in recent years,” Maceda said.

He also urged the authorities to investigate the killing and bring the responsible to justice.

“I join my voice to the cry of the people of Leyte, Leyte and the whole district in calling out concerned government agencies to expedite their investigation in order to restore order and enshrine peace once again in the hearts of everyone,” he said.