Brazil: Italian missionary priest murdered

 Father Giuseppe Bessone, 62, a Fidei Donum priest from the Italian diocese of Pinerolo working in Brazil, was stabbed to death during a suspected robbery, last Thursday night in his parish house at St Antonio Blumenau. Hundreds of mourners attended the priest's funeral held at the parish church on Sunday. The funeral Mass was presided over by the Bishops of Blumenau and Joinville and numerous priests from the dioceses of Florianopolis and Rio do Sul were present. The day before people had flocked continually to pay a final tribute to their parish priest whose body lay in state in the church all day Saturday. Police have arrested a 16 year-old male suspect. "What answer can we offer in the face of such violence?"- asked the Bishop of Pinerolo Piergiorgio Debernardi in a reflection published in the diocesan weekly. "We can only forgive. Forgiveness heals, restores health and renews society. Without forgiveness there can be no future of justice. We hold dear the memory of Don Giuseppe, a priest of unique humanity, totally dedicated to his ministry, loved by the people of his parish among whom succeeded in building a network of collaboration giving rise to a variety of ministries and services." Don Giuseppe was born in Bricherasio, Turin, in 1943 and was ordained a priest on 25 June 1967. After exercising his ministry in Pinerolo for some years, in 1975 he set out for Brazil as a Fidei Donum priest to be assistant priest in Our Lady of Glory in Blumenau. Later he served as parish priest at Our Lady of Fatima Joinville and at St Ines in Indasal and lastly at St Antonio in Blumenau. After a holiday in Italy, he had returned to Brazil only a few days ago to resume his pastoral work. Source: Fides

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