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Call for justice marks 1st death anniversary of NE priest

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CABANATUAN CITY – Calls for justice served the centerpiece in Monday’s commemoration rites on the first death anniversary of the parish priest who was gunned down while preparing to celebrate Mass in Zaragoza town.

A concelebrated Mass led by Bishop Sofronio Bancud of the Diocese of Cabanatuan was held at the Crypta of San Nicolas de Tolentino here in memory of Fr. Richmond Nilo. The clergy and the faithful paid a visit to his tomb in the churchyard afterwards.

“Hindi mabubura sa ating alaala ang mga pangyayari noong gabing yaon nang mabalitaan natin ang mga pangyayari na nagdulot ng kanyang kamatayan at makita sa social media ang mga larawan ng pinangyarihan ng krimen,” Bancud said in a statement read in Masses on Sunday.

Bancud said the 15,000 faithful that attended Nilo’s wake a year ago were there not just to condole but to pursue peace and defend the Catholic faith.

“Isang na taon ang lumipas mula nang si Fr. Richmond ay kinuha sa atin bilang pari ng ating sambayanan, patuloy pa rin ang aming panawagan at panalangin para sa katarungan, kapayapaan at kaayusan sa ating lipunan,” he said.

The diocese, he said, prays for a fair and just resolution of the case, including to the accused. “At ang iba pang tao na nasa likod ng krimeng ito ay maidala sa hustisya,” he added.

He thanked all the all parties, to include law enforcers, counsels, prosecutors and judges, and individuals who continue to persevere in order to have justice served to Nilo.

Nilo was putting on his vestments to start the Mass at Nuestra Señora delas Nieves Chapel in Barangay Mayamot, Zaragoza town when gunned down.

Three persons were subsequently arrested in connection with the killing.

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