Jesuit communities worldwide are condemning the actions of the Nicaraguan government after police ordered a community of priests from the Company of Jesus to leave their private residence Aug. 19 in the capital of Managua.
The Central America Conference of Provincials of the Company of Jesus said in an Aug. 19 press release that members of its religious order in Managua were “expelled” by the government from Villa Carmen, their personal residence close to the Central America University. The university was confiscated in mid-August by the government.
They said the six Jesuits who lived on the property are safe and living elsewhere for the moment.
The Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States said in an Aug. 19 statement that it is “alarmed and troubled” by the seizures but also by the “unjust” and false accusations the Nicaraguan government has leveled against the university and the order, calling them terrorists.
The move is the latest “spectacle,” the Central American conference said in its press release, against truth and human rights in the country. The conference said its members tried to tell state police that the Villa del Carmen residence was not part of the university, but private property belonging to the Jesuits. Members showed police documents but they were ordered to leave.
Members of the Confederation of Latin American and Caribbean Religious gathered in Guatemala City for a human trafficking seminar Aug. 18-20 have been praying daily for the Jesuits as well as other members of Catholic religious communities in Nicaragua, particularly since the problem hits close to home. Some of its members, including at least four communities of women religious have been expelled from the country, their properties confiscated, leaving their work with the poor unfinished.