The Archdiocese of San Salvador summoned the honor, after the Vatican confirmed that Grande would be canonized along with his comrades Manuel Solorzano and Nelson Lemos, as well as Italian father Cosme Spesoto.
The ceremony will be held on January 22, by Gregorio Rosa Chávez, the first and only Cardinal of El Salvador, a close figure of Saint Oscar Arnulfo Romero and mediator in the negotiations to end the armed conflict.
Grande, Solorzano, and Lemos were ambushed and killed by the defunct National Guard on March 12, 1977, when they were on their way to mass in the city of El Paísnal.
Grandi’s martyrdom radicalized then-archbishop Romero, his friend and confessor, who was also murdered three years later, and was canonized by the Catholic Church in October 2018.
Pope Francis, who keeps notes from Grande’s catechism in his bedroom at the Vatican, asserted that the Jesuit was a “prophet of witness” who categorically changed the one already venerated as the American Saint Romero.
In turn, Spesoto was assassinated in his own parish in San Juan Nonwalco on June 14, 1980, a few days after he had condemned the murders of four catechists by military personnel.
At the time, he wrote in a letter that he feared that he would die violently at the hands of “fanatics”, but despite warnings, he remained in El Salvador and was assassinated while praying on his knees in front of the altar.
El Salvador suffered from an armed conflict between 1980 and 1992, motivated by the assassination of Monsignor Romero, and marked by the killing of other religious people considered sympathetic to liberation theology.
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