- May 28, 2020
Jesuit Father Ismael Moreno has watched migrants leave this crossroads in northern Honduras for decades, starting with his own brother, who left for the United States in 1989.
A bishop in Mexico’s heroin-producing heartland is urging the federal government to hold talks with armed groups — including drug cartels — saying many in the illegal drug business are unable to make ends meet and are “seeking an exit.”
The Bishop of Chilpancingo-Chilapa, Mexico denied that Father Germain Muñiz Garcia, who was murdered on a Mexican highway Feb. 5 along with Father Iván Añorve Jaimes, had any connection to organized crime, as the Guerrero State Prosecutor’s Office has recently claimed.
Increased control of the U.S.-Mexican border between El Paso and Ciudad Juarez started in the 1990s to fight the international drug trade, and 9/11 marked a turning point in its militarization. In 2008, corrugated metal fencing was built and cut the binational city in two. Workers lost jobs, and families lost family members. El Paso’s sister city sank into poverty and drug-fueled violence.
The Mexican bishops’ conference expressed their joy “for the safe liberation and the health of Fr. Oscar López Navarro …. We lament that as a society we continue to be affected by violence. We thank everyone for their prayers, solidarity, and closeness.” The priest was kidnapped March 28 as he was arriving at his parish.
At least 31 priests have been slain in Mexico since 2006, and now the country’s bishops are calling on authorities to intensify the search for Father Joaquin Hernandez Sifuentes, a parish priest in the northern state of Coahuila that has been plagued by drug cartel violence.