.- The Archdiocese of Mexico City released a statement last week strongly condemning the murder of Father Jose Luis Parra Puerto, a pastor and chaplain of the Knights of Columbus in the Mexican capital. The statement called upon the authorities to avoid cutting corners in the investigation and to not allow the case to remain unsolved.
Fr. Jose Luis Parra was abducted and subsequently shot in the head on February 17 when he resisted the theft of his truck. According to the Archdiocese of Mexico City, Fr. Parra had been at a Knights of Columbus meeting, and was giving another member of the organization a ride home when the two men were accosted. The layman was freed, but the priest's body was found in his truck hours later, in a suburb outside Mexico City.
“The Church in Mexico City demands that competent officials carry out a rigorous investigation in order to bring justice and punish those guilty of this sacrilegious homicide.” The archdiocese then called for the attorney general of Mexico City to investigate and solve the murder.
The statement said the crime brought back memories of the case of Father Ricardo Junius Sander, an Oblate of Mary Immaculate, whose murder was overshadowed by the inefficiency of the justice system. The fact that the police and investigators did not execute their task thoroughly led to the tarnishing of the dead priest's name and honor. The statement also highlighted the incompetence of the police in investigating what was termed the “inexplicable suicide” of Marist Brother Pedro Escamilla Sanchez, which occurred earlier this month.
It is hoped that this statement, which calls upon the highest authorities, will bring attention to the injustice of the recent murders, and also to encourage efficiency in the criminal investigation and resolution of the case.
The archdiocese then joined in the “international condemnation” of the murder of Fr. Parra, “who had just received approval for a foundation he was promoting to assist the poor,” the statement indicated.