Mons. Giuseppe Nazzaro, former Latin Vicar of Aleppo, passed away on this day

Mons. Giuseppe Nazzaro died on Monday, October 26, at the San Giovanni Moscati d’Avellino Hospital. He had been the Latin Apostolic Vicar of Aleppo in Syria, and before that, the Custos of the Holy Land. Mons. Nazzaro was born on December 22, 1937, in San Potito Ultra (Avellino), and he entered the Minor Seminary of the Custody of the Holy Land in Rome in 1950.

He took the Franciscan habit in 1956 and made his solemn profession in the 60s. He went to Aleppo for the first time ever in 1966, a year after his ordination. Several responsibilities soon led him to Rome (1968), then to Alexandria, Egypt (1971), and finally to Cairo (1977).

During the 1986 Custodial Chapter, he was appointed Secretary of the Custody before becoming the Custos of the Holy Land in 1992. At the end of his term in 1998, he was transferred to Italy. In 2001, he was called again, but this time to Syria. A year after his arrival, he was chosen as the Latin Apostolic Vicar of Aleppo by Pope John Paul II and he was ordained a bishop by the Pope himself, on January 6, 2003, at Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome.

Mons. Nazzaro, left his office in 2013 at the age of 75, when Syria was already being devastated by two years of unrest and protests against the central government, which escalated into a real civil war. Mons. Nazzaro had wanted to focus his last bit of energy to the Syrian people, traveling and giving lectures and interviews to educate the general public, the media and policymakers about the tragedy that the people were experiencing.

His funeral took place on October 27, at 3:30 p.m., in his native country.

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