Catholic priest, 60, burns to death after spark ignites his robes during blessing of the fire ceremony

A priest has died from horrific injuries after his robe caught fire from a candle spark during an Easter vigil in the Spanish city of Zaragoza. He suffered 50 per cent burns in the freak accident over the Easter weekend and lost his battle for life after four days in intensive care. The priest, Javier Sánchez, was engulfed in flames amid a candle-lighting ceremony in a Spanish convent. An ember bowl surrounded by candles caught fire and shot off sparks which ignited his robes. Reports say the 60-year-old died a hero as he stood between the burning bowl and nuns to protect them. An investigation is underway as it is believed paraffin had been used on the ember bowl to help it burn. Father Sanchez was rushed to Miguel Servet Hospital in Zaragoza but suffered horrific injuries and despite the best efforts of doctors later died following multiple organ failure. 'The priest tried to protect the nuns of the convent when embers lit up in the basin that was used [for the fire] and that ultimately caused his death. Apparently a flammable substance had been used to start the fire. [The Easter Vigil] was held inside the convent,' said a source cited by Spanish newspaper El Heraldo de Aragón. Father Sanchez was presiding over the 'blessing of the fire' - a ritual held during Mass on Holy Saturday when paschal candle is lit and remains so for 50 days until the celebration of Pentecost. The deceased was known as the 'rock priest' because of his love for music and for having composed many songs. He released three albums over the course of his career. He also served as a priest at the Clinical Hospital of Zaragoza, in the parish of La Jota, and was also a talk show host on television.In 2015 he starred in a controversial video clip of his song 'A tu aire', in which he appeared only with angel wings and a guitar, covering his private parts. Tributes have flooded in, with one friend saying: 'He was a very vital and very loved person.' The Archbishop of Zaragoza issued a statement through the social network, saying: 'It is with pain that we communicate that this morning the priest Javi Sánchez has died. We pray for his eternal rest.' Pilar Martinez, secretary of the San Gregorio neighbourhood association, said the news of the priest's death had come as 'a bucket of cold water.' She said the priest had been 'a good man,' even though he hadn't been in the neighbourhood long. And the Brotherhood of Humility expressed on Facebook its 'deepest condolences and support to his entire family'. 'May the humility of God and the sweetness of Mary shelter you in heaven. Rest in peace. We will never forget you, Javi. Care for us in glory,' the brotherhood wrote.Source