Public Viewings at LA Cathedral Begin Thursday for Slain Bishop


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LOS ANGELES (CNS) - There will be public viewings and a vigil Mass Thursday at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels for Los Angeles Catholic Auxiliary Bishop David O'Connell, a beloved "peacemaker" who was gunned down 12 days ago at his home in Hacienda Heights.

The viewings will be from 10 a.m. to noon, and from 1 to 6 p.m., followed by the vigil Mass at 7 p.m. The Mass will be streamed at and

The 69-year-old O'Connell -- who was found shot just before 1 p.m. Feb. 18 at his home in the 1500 block of Janlu Avenue, near Turnbull Canyon Road -- is being remembered with three days of funeral services that began Wednesday with a memorial Mass at St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Hacienda Heights.

Friday, a funeral Mass is scheduled for 11 a.m., also at the cathedral.

In a statement following O'Connell's death, Archbishop José H. Gomez described  O'Connell as a "a peacemaker with a heart for the poor and the immigrant."

O'Connell was a native of Ireland and had been a priest and later a bishop in Los Angeles for 45 years.

His body was discovered when a deacon went to O'Connell's home to check on him, because O'Connell was apparently late for a meeting, Sheriff Robert Luna said.

Carlos Medina, 61, was arrested around 8:15 a.m. Feb. 20 following an hours-long standoff at his home in the 2400 block of Kenwood Avenue in Torrance. Luna said two firearms were recovered at Medina's home.

Medina is the husband of O'Connell's housekeeper, and he also performed handyman work at the bishop's home, authorities said. He has been charged with murder, and District Attorney George Gascón said that Medina had confessed to the crime, although a motive remains unknown.

The murder charge against Medina includes an allegation of the personal use of a firearm, meaning he faces up to 35 years to life in state prison if he is convicted as charged.

At the time of his death, O'Connell -- widely known as "Bishop Dave" -- was vicar for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles' San Gabriel Pastoral Region, a post he had since 2015, when Pope Francis appointed him as an auxiliary bishop for the Los Angeles Archdiocese.

O'Connell had previously served as associate pastor at St. Raymond Catholic Church in Downey, St. Maria Goretti Catholic Church in Long Beach, and St. Hilary Church of Perpetual Adoration in Pico Rivera and then as pastor of St. Frances X. Cabrini, Ascension, St. Eugene and St. Michael's parishes, all in Los Angeles.

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