Original Research - Special Collection: Christian Leadership

Oscar Romero (1917–1980): A model of pastoral leadership for church leaders in Africa

Valentine U. Iheanacho
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 76, No 2 | a5849 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v76i2.5849 | © 2020 Valentine U. Iheanacho | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 14 October 2019 | Published: 26 March 2020

About the author(s)

Valentine U. Iheanacho, Department of Historical and Constructive Theology, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa


Until 1977, Monsignor Romero was a traditional Catholic bishop trained in traditional Roman theology with a penchant for order and non-involvement in ‘politics’. He was also a product of the 1968 Medellin Conference which fashioned a pastoral model for the Latin American church: ‘A fundamental option for the poor’ on the thrust of the Second Vatican Council (1962–1965). This article seeks to present Oscar Romero within a historical context and proposes him as a servant–leader model for African church leaders, especially Catholic bishops.


Pastor; Prophet; Shepherd; Social Justice; Peace; Liberation; Repression; Oppression


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