Freedom, mercy are lasting legacy of martyred bishops, Pope Francis says

By Catholic News Service
Wednesday, June 5, 2019

BLAJ, Romania  — The memory and witness of Romania’s martyred bishops are a reminder that Christians are called to stand firm against ideologies that seek to stifle and suppress their cultural and religious traditions, Pope Francis said.

On the last leg of his visit to Romania, the pope June 2 celebrated a Divine Liturgy during which seven Eastern-rite Catholic bishops, who died during a fierce anti-religious campaign waged by the communist regime in Romania, were beatified.

“These pastors, martyrs for the faith, reappropriated and handed down to the Romanian people a precious legacy that we can sum up in two words: freedom and mercy,” the pope said. 

According to the Vatican, an estimated 60,000 people filled Blaj’s Liberty Field, while some 20,000 people followed the liturgy on big screens set up in various squares around the city.


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