PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia — Bishop Julius Gabris, one of four Roman Catholic bishops in Czechoslovakia, has died, the official CTK news agency reported. He was 74.
Gabris' death, after a long illness, leaves only three of the country's 13 Roman Catholic bishoprics headed by bishops. All three are also reported to be in ill health.
The state-sanctioned Roman Catholic weekly Katolicke Noviny (Catholic News) reported in its Nov. 8 issue that Gabris, the bishop of Trnava in Slovakia, was seriously ill and had been hospitalized. He died Friday.
Since the installation of the three surviving bishops and Gabris in 1973, negotiations between the Vatican and the Czechoslovak government have stalled because of Prague's unwillingness to approve clergymen proposed for bishoprics by the Vatican.