His life of holy acercamiento (a coming close) to the poor of El Salvador was an inspiration to so many struggling against apartheid in 1980s South Africa, that oppressive tyranny.
Oscar Romero: “El constatar estas realidades y dejarnos impactar por ellas, lejos de apartarnos de nuestra fe, nos ha remitido al mundo de los pobres como a nuestro verdadero lugar, nos ha movido como primer paso fundamental a encarnarnos en el mundo de los pobres. En él hemos encontrado los rostros concretos de los pobres de que nos habla Puebla.”
And finally we see Archbishop Romero raised to the altars. From John Thavis in New Advent:
Francis has spoken of the price Christians must sometimes pay for witnessing the faith.
“The disciple is ready to put his or her whole life on the line, even to accepting martyrdom, in bearing witness to Jesus Christ, yet the goal is not to make enemies but to see God’s word accepted and its capacity for liberation and renewal revealed,” the pope said in Evangelii Gaudium.
Archbishop Romero, who was killed at the altar by a gunman believed linked to right-wing death squads, once said, “I don’t want to be an anti, against anybody. I simply want to be the builder of a great affirmation: the affirmation of God, who loves us and who wants to save us.”
In general, Pope Francis seems to have an implicit trust in Catholics to recognize saints, relying less on Roman procedures to verify a life of holiness or martyrdom. He has several times waived the miracle requirement for canonization. In that sense, I think the strong conviction among many Latin American Catholics that Archbishop Romero was a saint helped move his cause forward once Francis assumed the papacy.