Pope OKs beatification for US brother slain in Guatemala battle


Pope Francis has decreed that an American non secular brother, James Miller, was killed out of hatred for the Catholic religion throughout Guatemala’s civil battle and will be beatified.

Miller is the second American slain in Guatemala to maneuver a step nearer to potential sainthood in recent times. The Rev. Stanley Rother, who was gunned down in the course of the Guatemalan battle in 1981, was beatified as a martyr in his native Oklahoma final yr.

The Vatican mentioned Thursday that Francis authorised a decree recognizing that Miller, from Stevens Level, Wisconsin, died as a martyr on Feb. 13, 1982, in Huehuetenango, Guatemala. The 37-year-old Miller had been working with indigenous youths as a member of the De La Salle Christian Brothers when he was killed by three masked males.

Nobody was ever arrested within the slaying. Miller’s fellow brothers reported receiving warnings that Guatemala’s armed forces intelligence unit, the G-2 loss of life squad, was searching for them.

A U.N. reality fee decided that some 245,000 folks have been killed or disappeared throughout Guatemala’s 1960-1996 civil battle, which pitted right-wing, U.S.-backed governments in opposition to leftist guerrillas and indigenous peoples. The overwhelming majority of the killings have been attributed to the military or to pro-government paramilitary teams.

Being declared a martyr exempts Miller from the standard beatification requirement of getting a miracle attributed to his intercession confirmed. Nonetheless, such a miracle could be required for him to be declared a saint. A date for his beatification has not been set.

Miller was one in every of greater than a dozen folks whose saint-making causes superior throughout an viewers Wednesday between Francis and the pinnacle of the Vatican’s saint-making workplace. Throughout the viewers, Francis took the weird step of decreeing that Michael Giedroyca, a lay member of the Order of St. Augustine in the course of the 15th century, may very well be beatified with out being declared a martyr or having a miracle attributed to his intercession.

Giedroyc was born in Lithuania with a situation that resulted in brief stature. He spent a lot of his life in Krakow, Poland, the place he died in 1485.

Francis has granted a handful of such “equal” decrees for well-known and revered saintly figures, together with Pope John XXIII, whom Francis declared a saint alongside St. John Paul II in 2014.


This story has been corrected to point out town the place Miller was killed is spelled Huehuetenango, not Huehuetenago.

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