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(CNS/Sergio Flores, Reuters)

The head of the New Orleans Archdiocese spoke of horror and pain following what police believe is the killing of a retired priest and possibly a Church worker in the archdiocese. Source: CNS.

“The horror of the events that have unfolded here in Covington is beyond shocking,” wrote Archbishop Gregory Aymond in a statement posted on the archdiocese’s website on Wednesday, after police confirmed that one of two burned bodies found on November 28 is that of retired priest Fr Otis Young, of St Peter Catholic Church in Covington, a suburb of New Orleans.

“Let us continue to pray for the repose of the soul of Fr Otis and for Ruth Prats, who remains missing, and for both their families and all who are suffering,” the archbishop wrote.

Authorities are working on identifying the second body, which many in the archdiocese believe could be Ms Prats, who helped care for the priest.

Covington Police Department arrested and charged Antonio Donde Tyson on November 28 with two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of second-degree kidnapping, among other charges, in the case.

The coroner said the bodies – discovered burned behind a building a day after the priest and Prats went missing November 27 – had signs of blunt and sharp force trauma. The victims are being identified by DNA testing.

Hundreds showed up to Holy Hour on Monday at the Covington parish after hearing news that two bodies were discovered, knowing that the priest and his helper were missing.

“Today, as we await confirmation of the second victim, I offer my prayers for both victims of this heinous crime,” the archbishop said in his statement.


New Orleans archbishop prays for murdered priest, missing worker (By Rhina Guidos, CNS)