Antipolo bishop forms panel to probe priest’s death

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    ANTIPOLO Bishop Francisco de Leon has ordered an investigation into the death of Fr. Nomer L. de Lumen, who was found dead last September 9 with a gunshot wound at the St. John the Baptist Parish Church in Taytay, Rizal where he served as the parochial vicar.

    De Lumen was found with a bullet wound in his chin, with a revolver with live ammunition beside him.

    “I am creating an Ad Hoc Committee, under the office of the Vicar for Clergy, consisting of three priests to investigate the underlying reasons regarding the death of Fr. Nomer L. de Lumen,” De Leon said.

    Named to chair the panel is Auxiliary Bishop Nolly Buco, with Fr. Aly Barcinal and Fr. Jeffrey Quintela as members.

    The probe team has until November 30 to personally submit to De Leon their written proceedings and final report and recommendations.

    De Leon said the probe is being launched on the request of the De Lumen family.

    He said this is also in order for the Diocese to be able to plan, design, promote, and execute measures and programs that could prevent a repeat of the incident among the clergy in the future.

    De Leon said the panel is primarily tasked to find out the truth regarding the reasons behind the death of De Lumen.

    He instructed the panel to conduct the investigation in a “respectful and discreet manner” to safeguard the rights of the Church as an institution as well as to protect the dignity of the deceased.

    The panel, according to de Leon, may call witnesses and experts, always under oath of confidentiality, as may be necessary in a bid to “shed light on the case in the interest of truth, fairness, and justice.”