Easter blessings from UCAN
There is no more important week in the year for Christians than this Holy Week. We call it Holy because of the mystery we celebrate - God's gift of His son who loves us to his death on Calvary and beyond.
Because of that love, we wish each other Happy Easter even when we know there is a lot of tragedy about it - Good Friday. As Christians, we know that what we see happening with and in Jesus goes to the heart of what we know from our own experience of life.
At the Second Vatican Council, the Christian lives we all lead were described as being shares in the Paschal Mystery. We have our share in the death and resurrection of Jesus every day. Our lives are part of the Paschal Mystery.
At UCAN, we work to describe that mystery in the unfolding tragedies and astonishing blessings of the people we seek out and report, feature and comment on.
While at times deeply distressing work, this effort of ours gets its coherence in the same way the death of Jesus did - because of the astonishing grace of a God who never gives up on life and love.
Because of that, we can wish you Happy Easter.
Fr. Michael Kelly SJ
Death of nun and two children: ex-priest confesses
Bodily remains unearthed in seminary
- Ryan Dagur, Jakarta
- February 6, 2013
A man claiming to be responsible for the death of three people, whose remains were recently unearthed in the compound of a seminary in East Nusa Tenggara, has turned himself in to police.
A Sikka district police official and head of the criminal investigation unit said Tuesday that Herman Jumat Masan was in their custody and had confessed to being involved in the death of Yosefin Keredok Payong and her two children. Both children were fathered by him.
“He is now being held in the district’s police station for further legal action. We have strong evidence linking him to the loss of three lives,” the official said.
Yosefin, whose identity was confirmed through DNA testing, was reported missing in 2002. She was a nun with the Congregation of the Missionary Sisters Servants of the Holy Spirit at the time of her disappearance.
Her remains and those of her two children were discovered last week in the compound of a school operated by the St Peter Major Seminary in Sikka district. They have since been turned over to family members.
The district police official said Masan arrived on Monday from East Kalimantan, where the former diocesan priest – he left the priesthood in 2008 – was employed.
In a report on Wednesday, the Flores Pos – a publication operated by the Society of the Divine Word – quoted Masan as saying Yosefin had an affair with him while he was a priest and gave birth to their first child in 1999.
"The boy was born alive. Yosefin and I could not bear the social stigma of this birth. I covered his mouth. Eventually he died and I buried him in front of the house in Lela,” Masan told Flores Pos, referring to a facility operated by St Peter Major Seminary.
“The second birth took place around March 2002. The mother could not deliver safely because the placenta could not come out. So both mother and baby died,” Masan told Flores Pos.
He said he had asked Yosefin to go to hospital but that she had refused.
“I dug their graves myself while other community members were attending an event,” he said.
“From the deepest part of my heart, I deliver my apologies to the victims’ family and all related parties for the case I am now facing. I’m ready to take responsibility.”
According to Flores Pos, Masan at the time of the deaths was serving as a priest in Larantuka diocese and also held the post of associate at the seminary's school.