The Vatican has expressed concern after around 160 Catholic priests died from Covid-19 in the past 5 weeks, or an average of 4 each day in India. Capuchin Priest Father Suresh Mathew, editor of the Church-run Indian Currents magazine has compiled a list of at least 160 diocesan and religious priests, who died in between April 10 to May 17, Vatican News reported.
(Photo of Church of South India priests gathered together in April 2021 amidst Covid lockdown in Kerala)
Of the 160, more than 60 are from religious orders, with Jesuits topping the list with 24 deaths. According to Fr. Mathew, the list is incomplete as many deaths in the second wave of the pandemic have not been reported from all of the country’s 174 dioceses.
Fr. Mathew said, “Even this initial list is very alarming, as we have only some 30,000 Catholic priests and if four die daily, it is a matter of great concern for all of us.”