During the 1980s, 115 Catholic missionaries were violently killed. This figure, however, refers only to confirmed cases. Cases of yet unconfirmed murders may increase the number.

According to a Vatican summary for the years 1990 to 2000, there were 604 missionaries killed. The number is significantly higher than the previous decade, however, the following factors must also be considered:

the genocide in Rwanda (1994) that caused at least 248 victims among priests and religious;

the increasing ability of mass media to distribute news from the remotest places; 

the count no longer refers solely to missionaries as such, but also includes all priests and religious killed in a violent manner, or who sacrificed their lives aware of the risks.

In the years 2001-2010 the total number of pastoral workers killed was 255. In the year 2011, 26 pastoral workers were killed: 18 priests, 4 women religious, 4 lay church workers.

Source: Fides


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