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Bishop Rolando Álvarez (CNS/Maynor Valenzuela, Reuters)

A second Nicaraguan bishop has been arrested after voicing spiritual support for imprisoned Bishop Rolando Álvarez of Matagalpa, according to independent Nicaraguan media. Source: OSV News.

Bishop Isidoro Mora of Siuna, who serves the country’s remote Caribbean coast, was stopped by police and paramilitaries as he was travelling on Wednesday to the community of La Cruz de Río Grande to celebrate the sacrament of Confirmation at the local parish, according to a news organisation Mosaico CSI.

Two seminarians travelling with the bishop were also detained, Martha Patricia Molina, a Nicaraguan lawyer who has documented attacks on the Church, said via X (formerly known as Twitter).

The motives for Bishop Mora’s arrest were not immediately clear. Mosaico CSI cited a homily given days earlier by the bishop at the Cathedral of St Peter in Matagalpa, in which he expressed support on behalf of the Nicaraguan bishops’ conference for Bishop Álvarez.

“I would like to express the greetings of the episcopal conference. We are always united in praying for this beloved Diocese of Matagalpa, praying for Monsignor Rolando, praying for the journey of each one of you. We are united in prayer, in communion, in faith, in love,” Bishop Mora said at the Mass.

Bishop Álvarez has spent more than 500 days in detention after being detained in his diocesan curia during a predawn raid in August 2022. He had been protesting the closure of Catholic media outlets, but drew widespread attention for denunciation of human rights abuses and criticism of President Daniel Ortega.

He was convicted after a sham trial in February 2023 on charges of spreading false information and conspiracy and sentenced to 26 years in prison. The bishop has refused to leave the country, despite attempts by the ruling Sandinista regime to send him into exile.


Second Nicaraguan bishop arrested by regime after voicing support for imprisoned Bishop Álvarez (By David Agren, OSV News)