Salvadoran state commemorates Romero anniversary

During his recent visit to El Salvador, Brazil's president Lula de Silva visited the tomb of Oscar Romero with Salvadoran president Mauricio Funes.

This year, for the first time ever, official El Salvador is acknowledging and commemorating the life of Oscar Romero, as the thirtieth anniversary of his assassination approaches on March 24.

On March 4, the Salvadoran National Assembly passed a decree declaring March 24 each year to be Monseñor Oscar Arnulfo Romero Day. On March 24, president Mauricio Funes, who commited himself to Romero's option for the poor when he was elected the country's first leftist president, will apologize on behalf of the Salvadoran state for Romero's murder at the hands of a right wing death squad.

Today a concert and cultural event was held in San Salvador in Romero's honor. President Funes, members of his cabinet, the diplomatic corps, and the slain archbishop's brother were in attendance.

In the past, many sectors of Salvadoran society have commemorated March 24 with marches, vigils, concerts and other events. Eighteen years after the signing of the peace accords which ended El Salvador's civil war, the national government is finally joining with the rest of the country in commemorating El Salvador's beloved pastor.