Bishop Romero Dies Following Surgery

Episcopal News Service. June 5, 1986 [86122]

MONTERREY, Mexico (DPS, June 5) -- The Rt. Rev. Leonardo Romero, bishop of Northern Mexico, died here at San Jose Hospital on June 2, 13 days after a brain operation to remove a cyst located at the base of the skull. Following the operation, he fell into a coma from which he never recovered. He was 55 years old.

Born in Danu, Mexico, in 1930, Romero was ordained deacon and priest in 1957. He was consecrated suffragan bishop of Mexico in 1964. He held degrees from the University of Morelos and St. Andrew's Seminary, Mexico City, and the Virginia Theological Seminary granted him an honorary doctor's degree in 1964.

In 1973, when the Diocese of Northern Mexico was created, he was elected its first bishop. During his ministry, Romero served on many national and international committees and commissions. At the time of his death, he was serving his second term as President of Province IX. He was also Bishop-in-Charge of El Salvador.

Presiding Bishop Edmond L. Browning praised Romero as an "able and faithful servant of Christ who gave the best of his life to the mission of the Church."

A memorial Eucharist was celebrated on June 5 at the Church of the Holy Family, Monterrey, where he will be buried. Many Church leaders from Mexico and other countries are expected to attend. Judith Gillespie, acting executive for World Mission at the Episcopal Church Center in New York, attended the service representing the Church Center staff.

Romero is survived by his wife, Amelia Parra, and two teen-age boys. The Diocese of Northern Mexico has set up a memorial fund to assist in the completion of several missionary projects started under Romero's leadership.