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Assault on Bishop: Priests Acted With Authentic Lay Participation

Three priests are among 12 (other sources: 24) people arrested on April 26, hours after Rumbek's bishop-elect Christian Carlassare was shot, AciAfrica.org reports.

Police were following crucial leads from a cellphone found at the crime scene. One of the gunmen who shot Carlassare dropped it, and Carlassare fell on it.

Among those arrested are prominent lay personalities of Rumbek Diocese. South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir, a Catholic, asked for a swift investigation of the crime.

The acting minister of Information and Communication, William Kocji Kerjok, told Radio Tamazuj on April 26 that "we are treating [the case] as politics within the Catholic Church itself.”

He added that the Church's leadership should answer for this, "That is why the government is arresting almost everybody [in the bishop's compound] so that they are held accountable for this.”

A careless Vatican needed almost ten (!) years to replace Rumbek Bishop Cesare Mazzolari who died in 2011. It's likely that those who filled this power vacuum feel threatened by the new bishop.

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