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Philippines    REDEMPTORISTS OFFER FUNERAL MASS FOR PRIEST MISSING 15 YEARS
The Redemptorist congregation in the Philippines has finally offered a funeral Mass for their confrere Fr Rudy Romano, 15 years after his disappearance.
    Last week's Mass in the Redemptorist chuch in Cebu city is seen as an acceptance of Fr Romano's death. But Fe Luis Hechanova told UCA News that the congregation still hopes to learn what happened.
    "Someday someone, burdened with guilt or moved by conscience, might still come forward and tell us the exact circumstances of his death," said Fr Hechanova, who headed the Redemptorists when Father Romano was abducted.
    At the anniversary Mass, Father Hechanova urged those in attendance "to pray for the eternal repose (of Father Romano's soul) and ask for the Lord's forgiveness towards those responsible for his abduction and death."
    A taxi driver claimed that he saw two military intelligence agents seize Fr Romano on July 11, 1985, in the Barangay Tisa section of Cebu City, 565 km southeast of Manila. Other witnesses reported that military men took Father Romano along with student leader Rolan Ybanez.
    The Redemptorists withdrew their lawyers from court hearings on Fr Romano's case in 1986 after the taxi driver died mysteriously.
    Father Romano, who was ordained in 1964 and was 44 when he disappeared, was active with the Visayas Ecumenical Movement for Justice and Peace.
   
UCAN
20 July 00



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