The Rt. Rev. Edward Robinson de Barros Cavalcanti and his wife, Miriam Cotias Cavalcanti Nunes Machado, were murdered in their home in Olinda, Brazil, late Sunday. The bishop was 68 and his wife was 64.
Police suspect the couple’s son, Eduardo Cavalcanti Olimpio Cotias, 29, whom they said poisoned and stabbed himself after the attacks. He was admitted to a hospital.
Cavalcanti was consecrated as Bishop of Recife in 1997. The Episcopal Anglican Church of Brazil deposed him after a protracted conflict about the diocese’s distancing itself from the province.
In 2005, Presiding Bishop Gregory Venables of the Anglican Church of the Southern Cone extended his personal primatial oversight to Bishop Cavalcanti and 40 priests of the Diocese of Recife after they were deposed. Approximately 90 percent of the diocese backed Bishop Cavalcanti and withdrew from the Anglican Episcopal Church of Brazil to form the Anglican Diocese of Recife.
Two years later, the Southern Cone province designated the Anglican Diocese of Recife as an extra-territorial diocese of the Church of the Province of the Southern Cone.
In June Cavalcanti called for the election of a bishop coadjutor, saying he planned to retire in 2014.
“The diocesan family give thanks to God for the dedicated ministry of its father in God, our pastor, teacher and friend, a true prophet and present-day martyr, who fought for the cause of the Gospel of Christ, for the Church and for the Anglican Communion, and who always depended on his wife, a faithful co-servant who supported him throughout his years in ministry,” said a statement from diocesan leaders.