As attacks on Catholic clergy continue and anti-government protesters are besieged by Nicaraguan police and paramilitaries, the bishops said they would pray an exorcism prayer.

The bishops said that July 20 would be a day of prayer and fasting “as an act of atonement for the profanation carried out in recent months against God.” On that day, “We will pray the prayer of exorcism to St Michael Archangel.”

On July 15, the vehicle of Bishop Juan Mata Guevara of Esteli was shot as he travelled to the city of Nindiri, where he had hoped to stop an attack by police and paramilitaries. The bishop escaped unharmed but the vehicle’s tires were shot out and windows broken, said Fr Victor Rivas, executive secretary of the Nicaraguan bishops’ conference.

An attack on July 14 at the nearby National Autonomous University of Nicaragua campus in Managua left two students dead and injured 15 more. Some of the fleeing protesters sought shelter in Divine Mercy Church, where the injured were being treated, but armed assailants stopped ambulances from reaching the church.

A Washington Post reporter was among those trapped in the parish, which churchmen said had been “profaned,” and pictures posted to social media showed the church had been pockmarked by bullets.

Read more at Catholic Herald. 

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