A pastor who remains in critical but stable condition after surviving an attack in a Phoenix church that took the life of a fellow priest had served in Denver for nine months.
Father Joseph Terra, F.S.S.P., 56, was critically wounded in the June 11 evening assault at Misericordiae Mission that took the life of his associate pastor, Father Kenneth Walker, F.S.S.P., 28. The two are members of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter order, which celebrates the extraordinary form of the Latin Mass.
“Father Terra is a very dear man,” said Jean O’Brien, a parishioner of Holy Ghost Church in Denver, as she recalled his service to what is now Our Lady of Mount Carmel Latin Mass Community in Littleton.
Archbishop Samuel Aquila sent a morning tweet urging prayers for the priests and for the Phoenix Diocese.
“The police are still gathering information and trying to sort through the details of this senseless act of violence. We ask that people offer prayers for both priests, the religious community, their families and the parish,” the Phoenix Diocese said in a June 12 statement.
Police responded to a burglary call from Father Terra shortly after 9:30 p.m. June 11 at the Mater Misericordiae Mission.
Despite being seriously beaten in the attack, Father Terra administered last rites to his dying brother priest, Father Fred Adamson, vicar general and moderator of the curia for the Phoenix Diocese, said at a press conference.
The Catholic Sun contributed to this report.