Our brother priest, the late Fr. Mark Anthony Ventura, was a dedicated priest, a zealous pastor, a missionary to the “peripheries”. He was beloved by all who knew him. He was an affectionate person, sympathetic, close and intimate to many people: rich and poor, men and women, young and old. We miss his infectious smile and untiring zeal.

Obviously he had enemies. We do not know who they are or why they had to kill him. The Police is investigating the killing from all angles. We do not want to speculate on what the reasons are for his death. Neither do we want that the investigation be muddled by the spreading of unfounded rumors and malicious insinuations. We trust that the PNP is faithfully doing their job. We wish them success, to come out with solid evidence, to apprehend the killers and determine the mastermind. We hope and pray that the real truth will come out so that justice for Fr. Mark will finally be served.

The truth will set us free (Jn. 8, 32).

+ Sergio L. Utleg, D.D.
Archbishop of Tuguegarao
May 21, 2018