Bishop Romero Given El Salvador Oversight

Episcopal News Service. March 15, 1984 [84054]

NEW YORK, (DPS, March 15) -- The Rt. Rev. Leonardo Romero, Bishop of the Diocese of Northern Mexico, has been appointed Bishop-in-Charge of El Salvador by the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, the Most Rev. John M. Allin.

Romero, president of Province IX (11 dioceses in Central America and the Caribbean) succeeds Bishop G. Edward Haynsworth, executive for World Mission at the Episcopal Church Center in New York.

Romero's appointment was made at the recommendation of the standing committee of the Diocese of El Salvador.

The Episcopal Church in El Salvador is probably the smallest in all the Anglican Communion. It has several missions in both urban and rural areas served by two priests -- Luis Serrrano and Victoriano Jimeno. However, the Episcopal Church sponsors CREDHO, a large social and development program among peasants and low-income city dwellers.

Romero will have pastoral oversight of the diocese and will visit the war-torn country regularly.

The Episcopal Church in El Salvador has suffered nine violent deaths in recent years. South African Ambassador Archibald Dunn was murdered in 1979 after being kidnapped for several months and Dr. Rosa Judith Cisneros, a 45-year-old Salvadoran lawyer was killed in 1980 as she was leaving her home. Just last year, seven peasants in La Florida, a church-sponsored model farm, were murdered and their bodies mutilated.

El Salvador and Nicaragua are the only Central American dioceses that do not have a resident bishop. The Episcopal Church work in El Salvador began in the late 50's.