The Bishops of Scotland are praying for peace in Nicaragua after a bishop there was arrested by the Government.
In a statement, the Scottish Bishop’s conference said they were ‘alarmed by the increased persecution of the Catholic Church in Nicaragua’ following the arrest of a bishop who is a leading critic of President Daniel Ortega.
Bishop Rolando Alvarez of Matagalpa (above) in the north of the country, was detained on Friday, along with eight others – including several priests –who they had been blockading at the bishop’s residence.
Police then launched an investigation into Álvarez, accusing him of ‘destabilising the Nicaraguan state”.
The Scottish bishops said they wanted to express their solidarity with the Bishop’s conference of Nicaragua after a string of attacks including the ‘the arrest and detention without trial of clergy and the summary closure of eight radio and television stations run by the Catholic Church’
“We offer the promise of our prayers for a just resolution to the current situation, which will allow the people of Nicaragua to enjoy such fundamental rights as freedom of speech and freedom of religion and permit them to worship, pray and manifest their faith freely,” the Scottish bishops said. “We urge the government of Nicaragua to enter into a respectful dialogue with the church in the hope that both church and state may coexist peacefully. We pray too that good relations between the Holy See and Nicaragua will soon be restored.”