SCJ Priest Shot Dead in Venezuela

Father José Manuel de Jesús Ferreira, SCJ, 39 years old,  was shot dead at the entrance of the parish house in the city of San Carlos, in the State of Cojedes, Venezuela.  The murder took place in the evening on October 20, 2020, just after celebrating a Mass. While he was talking and saying goodbye to his parishioners several armed men came by and subdued them in order to enter the house and rob it. Apparently, the priest resisted the assault, so the armed men shot him lethally in the chest.

Father José Manuel was born in Caracas on November 25, 1980, the son of Portuguese immigrants. He entered the Congregation of Priests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in 2000. He was ordained a priest on December 19, 2009. At the moment of the incident, he was the parish priest at “San Juan” Eucharistic shrine, where he had begun the restoration of the shrine which dates back to the colonial era and was promoting various social activities in favor of the most disadvantaged. Among other tasks, he was responsible for the missionary pastoral care of the diocese of San Carlos. Those who knew him, remember his charismatic and dynamic spirit, always interested in developing innovative activities. Affable and calm, he was always available to help his brothers and sisters; a man of “open doors.”