José Raúl Vera López

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José Raúl Vera López

Conmemoración de Asociación de Costureros y Costureras 22 de septiembre.jpg
Bishop Vera in 2014
Born (1945-06-21) June 21, 1945 (age 73)
ReligionRoman Catholic
OrderDominican Order
Senior posting
Based inMexico
ConsecrationJanuary 6, 1988 by John Paul II
OrdinationJune 29, 1975 by Paul VI

José Raúl Vera López is a Mexican friar of the Dominican Order and since 2000 bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Saltillo. He is known as well for his struggle for human rights and social justice.

Early Biography[edit]

Vera López was born on June 21, 1945 in Acámbaro.


In 1968 he started his religious training in the novitiate of the Order of Preachers, also known as the Dominican Order, in the Central Mexican city of León. Subsequently he studied philosophy in Mexico City and in theology in Bologna in Italy.

Vera Lopez is an alumnus of the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas Angelicum where he obtained a licentiate in Sacred Theology with a grade of summa cum laude. He was ordained priest by Pope Paul VI on 29 June 1975 and consecrated bishop by Pope John Paul II on 6 January 1988.[1]


Vera López held several clerical posts, was appointed a bishop of the Diocese of Ciudad Altamirano in 1987, a coadjutor bishop of the Diocese of San Cristóbal de Las Casas in 1995, and a bishop of Diocese of Saltillo in 1999.[2]

Next to his clerical career, Vera López is an avowed advocate for human rights and social justice. With the risk for his own safety he expressed his views against abuse of power, corruption, absence of the rule of law and violations of human rights. Furthermore, he opposes the fact that, although Mexico is not really a poor country, around half of its 110 million people live below the poverty line.[3]


Vera López was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize in 2012. He received several recognitions, e.g.:

  • 2000: «Don Sergio Méndez Arceo» National Prize for Human Rights
  • 2000: «Roque Dalton» Medal
  • 2007: Medal of Merit in Mexico City
  • 2009: «Samuel Ruiz» Award
  • 2009: «Hijo predilecto de Acámbaro» Award
  • 2010: Thorolf Rafto Memorial Prize
  • 2013: Doctorate honoris causa in humanities from the Dominican Bayamón Central University in Puerto Rico.


  1. ^ "Bishop José Raúl Vera López, O.P." David M. Cheney. Retrieved 21 January 2015.
  2. ^ Spanish Wikipedia (December 31, 2012) lemma on Vera Lopéz
  3. ^ Rafto Foundation for Human Rights (2010) The 2010 Rafto Prize To José Raúl Vera López - Fearless Defender Of Mexico’s Most Vulnerable[permanent dead link]