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Diego Valencia (CNA/Enraizados)

Catholics in the southern Spanish Diocese of Cádiz and Ceuta are calling for the Church to promote the canonisation cause of Diego Valencia, a sacristan who was murdered by a Muslim extremist in January. Source: CNA. 

Mr Valencia was fatally wounded on January 25 after being struck with a machete wielded by Yassinne Kanjaa, a Moroccan national. The jihadist entered the Church of Our Lady of La Palma in Algeciras and proceeded to strike statues, candles, and other objects with the machete. 

Mr Valencia, 65, who had been serving as a chaplain for 16 years, confronted the assailant. After being struck by Kanjaa with what one witness called “a large blue machete” and others described as a “knife” or “a kind of katana”, a curved Japanese sword, the sacristan fled outside the church, where the jihadist caught and killed him. 

According to the association Enraizados en Cristo y la Sociedad (Rooted in Christ and Society), which has launched the effort to start the canonisation process, the pastor of the church, Fr Juan José Marina, has already asked the bishop of Cádiz and Ceuta, Rafael Zornoza, to begin the process to open the diocesan phase of the canonisation process.

The deceased sacristan was “much loved in the parish and in the city for his dedication and affability with everyone”, the diocese said.

The Enraizados association emphasised in a statement on its website that, “His murderer ended his life. We will not allow time to end his memory and his extraordinary act of courage, undoubtedly impelled by the Holy Spirit.” 


 Catholics call for opening of canonization cause for sacristan slain by jihadist in Spain (By Nicolás de Cárdenas, CNA)