June 3rd, 2010
10:32 AM ET

Catholic bishop stabbed to death in southern Turkey

A Catholic bishop has been stabbed to death in southern Turkey, the Vatican Embassy in Ankara confirmed on Thursday.

The victim was identified by the Vatican as Luigi Padovese, the apostolic vicar of Anatolia. He was assaulted on Thursday in his house in Iskenderun, located in Hatay province, the Vatican said.

Church officials expressed "shock and sorrow" over the death of Padovese, also the president of the Turkey Bishops Conference

"I can only express an immense pain over this violent act that has taken us by surprise," Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said.

"The tragedy of this event shows the difficulty that the Christian community endures in the Middle East region."

Roman Catholics in Turkey "occasionally have been subjected to violent societal attacks," according to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, a U.S. government agency.

The group's latest report cites the February 2006 shooting death of "an Italian Catholic priest" in Trabzon by a boy "angered over the caricatures of the Muslim prophet in Danish newspapers."

A 16-year-old boy was charged with murder and sentenced to jail in the act, which drew condemnations from Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and other government officials.

In July 2009, a "mentally disturbed young man' killed Gregor Kerkeling, a Catholic German businessman in what has been described as an anti-Christian hate crime. The suspect confessed.

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Filed under: Turkey • Vatican
soundoff (18 Responses)
  1. MAS

    Not a good situation!

    June 3, 2010 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
  2. damiao

    Catholic and protestant also victim from this animals. They are not human beings. http://www.englishtips-self-taught.blogspot.com

    June 3, 2010 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
  3. samay06

    i am really sorry for this person and all christian people should be sure that all turkey is sad because of this event,and now everybody will think that turkish people did it which is not human being or whatever ?? but i want to ask you that ;is it so normal to think like that when the israel has faced with critisms which is done by all over world?than this event happaned i am totaly sure that mossad is behind of this event(they are behind of everything) for make the people's mind focus on another topic

    June 3, 2010 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Souler

      umm... you're a bit paranoid.
      just a bit

      June 3, 2010 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  4. MIKE


    June 3, 2010 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Joyce Alonzo

    This is a very sad situation. WE need more people to pray for world peace, and true brotherhood between different faiths.

    June 3, 2010 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Desperado

    Oh yeah the mossad did it samay06, man you are so retricted with a western religous view that your people can do no wrong and are only wronged by others. This is why Iseral can do no right no matter how they try because muslims will never repect any other religon and we are all infidels and unclean. There are also so called chritian views that feel the same towards you. That';s what this is all about and till we figure it out as human beings we will never get along.

    June 3, 2010 at 2:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • School of hard knox

      26.09.01 haaretz and US Gov official 911 report
      Odigo says workers were warned of attack
      Odigo, the instant messaging service, says that two of its workers received messages two hours before the Twin Towers attack on September 11 predicting the attack would happen, and the company has been cooperating with Israeli and American law enforcement, including the FBI, in trying to find the original sender of the message predicting the attack.
      By Yuval Dror Odigo, the instant messaging service, says that two of its workers received messages two hours before the Twin Towers attack on September 11 predicting the attack would happen, and the company has been cooperating with Israeli and American law enforcement, including the FBI, in trying to find the original sender of the message predicting the attack.

      Micha Macover, CEO of the company, said the two workers received the messages and immediately after the terror attack informed the company's management, which immediately contacted the Israeli security services,

      June 4, 2010 at 3:52 am | Report abuse |
  7. venicerose

    The world is in a mess partly because so many people are willing to believe irrational global generaliziions without regard to the lack of proof.

    June 3, 2010 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rick

      More so that people believe in 'higher powers' which is what creates all this mess to begin with. The sooner people realize that religion was developed to control the masses, the better off our world will be.

      June 3, 2010 at 4:16 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Arthur Uvaas

    It is clear to me that the descendants of Ishmael have no intention of being loving servants of Allah. This holy,
    admirable Roman Catholic Bishop was senselessly cut down by a "brainwashed" Muslim youth. The tenets of
    Islam call for the destruction of Christianity. It is time for all Eastern Hemispheric/Arab Christians to re-locate to
    the West, (if you're able to do so). Adherents of Islam have no intention of living with you peacefully. These
    partisans would rather see you persecuted,humiliated, (and eventually dead).

    What a miserable world this is- Is there no hope for man to live as brothers?
    I will say this. The hatred of Muslims is always in your face.

    The West must wean itself from this region, (and its oil, which holds our industrial, transportation- addled society

    The vestiges of the Ottoman Empire-and the promises not kept by the West after World Wars I-and-II), have bitten
    us like a venomous snake.

    We pray that the persecution of Christians in this region will be ameliorated.

    May God Bless you-Your Excellency-on your return home to Him. "Forgive them Father, for they know not what
    they do."

    June 3, 2010 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Fiona

      This was (is) a terrible crime. Mr. Uvaas is correct–Islam will never respect any other faith. Having said that, I still hold the opinion that the Catholic Church, like the Mormon Church, is a cult, a dictatorship, where those at the top benefit and those at the bottom keep those at the top in a comfortable existence. Witness the dirt-poor villages in Mexico where the local Catholic Church is bound to have a gold communion plate and stained glass windows. Sad, really.

      December 1, 2010 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Cyrus Howell

    Muslims are experts at looking around for others to blame.

    June 3, 2010 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Cyrus Howell

    So many millions have been killed because of religion that just one more really does not matter.

    June 3, 2010 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Rick

    And grab a flak vest and install bullet proof windows if you make a negative comment about Islam – they say Islam is a peaceful religion yet I haven't seen any proof of that. People make a caricature of a 'prophet' character and they get shot or threatened within an inch of their life... that is surely a peaceful religion – I guess. The last image I saw of the christian Jesus was pretty funny and I no one got killed over it.

    June 3, 2010 at 4:24 pm | Report abuse |
  12. zophorian

    If an Iman was stabbed to death in Europe or the USA all hell would break loose. But when a bishop is killed in Turkey? Nothing but a small story on CNN.com that buried in the archives after one day. And nothing will come of this murder either. The West has become too domesticated to do anything about violence like this but express sympathies and find reasons why they are to blame, and not the radicals who actually held the knife. There is a difference between being civilized and being domesticated. Civilized people don't threaten to kill people over insults nor do they deliberately attack innocent women and children, but they do stand up for what they believe in and fight against those who attack them. Domesticated people just sit back and take what comes, letting themselves be trampled over. I the West can't stop being domesticated and start being civilized again then fundamentalist Islam will take over Europe.

    June 4, 2010 at 7:40 am | Report abuse |
  13. Michaelten

    It is extremely sad to see the tragiic death of the bishop by this extremist. The bishop was stabbed many times over and basically decapitated. This is a heinous and grotesque act. The accused killer yelled from the roof top of the bishop' s house "Death to the Infidel". The Turkish government needs to step up to the plate and derail this sacrificial jihadist minded killing. The West needs to really pressure Turkey to crack down on extremism that is slowly seeping in to secular Turkey.

    This killing took place in a very symbolic and historic area of early Christianity, that being Antioch.

    Anyone who cannot connect the dots to where, how, and why such a horrific tragedy took place surely needs a history lesson. Anyone who thinks this was a random act by an insane individual; one without political and/or extemist religious motivations is extremely naive!

    June 13, 2010 at 4:23 am | Report abuse |
  14. VLS

    It appears that the killer was the Bishop's driver. Supposedly he had converted to Catholicism but the Bishop had recently heard that he had reverted to fundamentlist Islam. This driver was supposed to take the Bishop to the city where the Holy Father was going to be.... Because of the rumors the Bishop had heard he didnot go to see the Pope. Praise God. It appears that he could possibly have stopped an attempt on the Pope's life by not going. It was reported that the words that were yelled from the rooftop were the same words the Fort Hood murdered used.

    June 13, 2010 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |