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Assassination of a SaintThe Plot to Murder Óscar Romero and the Quest to Bring His Killers to Justice$
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Matt Eisenbrandt and Benjamín Cuéllar

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780520286795

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520286795.001.0001

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“The Door of History”

“The Door of History”

Archbishop Romero and the Catholic Church in El Salvador

Chapter:
(p.38) Four “The Door of History”
Source:
Assassination of a Saint
Author(s):

Matt Eisenbrandt

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520286795.003.0004

Using trial testimony about Romero’s last Sunday homily in 1980, this chapter gives a history of the Catholic Church in El Salvador and Romero’s life culminating in his three years as archbishop. The Church underwent an overhaul during the 1960s, leading many priests and bishops in Latin America to follow Liberation Theology, the belief that rather than providing charity to the poor, they should focus on the systemic causes of inequality. Romero was viewed by many Salvadoran clergy as conservative when he became archbishop in 1977 but the death squad murder of his friend Rutilio Grande, a Jesuit follower of Liberation Theology, pushed Romero to more openly denounce those responsible for the inequality and repression. The day before his murder, Romero, in his Sunday homily, called on soldiers to “stop the repression” by disobeying the orders of their commanders.

Keywords:   Liberation Theology, Romero, Catholic church, Grande, Jesuit

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