George Neumayr | Photo: Twitter
Letter #26, 2023 Monday, January 23: Neumayr
George Neumayr, a courageous American Catholic journalist, has passed away. He was 50.
He died on January 19, 2023, four days ago, in the Ivory Coast, a former French colony on the West coast of Arica.
His death was attributed to malaria (specifically, “after contracting malaria”).
Neumayr had gone there on an investigative assignment involving corruption in the Church, and had sent out tweets in December that his investigation was uncovering some “scary stuff.” (see tweets below)
“I suspect there will be some murders before this is over, maybe even my own,” Neumayr tweeted on December 23, exactly one month ago. “I am not joking. This is getting scary.”
I met Neumayr in Rome several years ago, and we sat for a couple of hours for a brunch in a cafe near the Vatican.
The Neumayr I came to know was a man of great intensity, great courage and great faith.
In our conversation, we spoke at length and in some detail about the dangers threatening our Church.
My impression from that conversation — and from seeing some of the videos he posted about his research —was that Neumayr was a man who deeply loved the Church and regarded anything that harmed the Church, especially corruption when it was covered up so that the guilty might avoid punishment, was an offense to the Bride of Christ that he felt personally called upon to expose and bring to an end, our of love for the honor and holiness of the Church.
And so he labored to defend the honor and holiness of the Church, making powerful enemies in the process.
Now George Neumayr is gone, too soon…
May he rest in peace, and may eternal light shine upon him.
And may it become the work of some other Catholic journalist(s) to carry on and complete the investigations he was engaged in, for love of the Church.
Farewell, George Neumayr, a man with the heart of a lion.