Elderly nun, two priests abducted by gunmen from West African village. Oh, we forgot to tell you, the nun is 80 years old.
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
4/6/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
A Canadian nun, 80-year-old Sister Gilberte Bissiere was abducted, along with two Italian priests by a gang of armed kidnappers this past weekend in the Cameroon. The gunmen left African religious workers behind.
Sister Gilberte had been part of a Catholic mission to help improve the local water supply as well as provide medical help to those with HIV and AIDS.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Sister Gilberte had been part of a Catholic mission to help improve the local water supply as well as provide medical help to those with HIV and AIDS.
Armed forces in Cameroon are investigating the incident. Officials have not said who was behind the abduction of Sister Gilberte and the priests, Giampaolo Marta and Gianantonio Allegri.
"Doors were broken towards midnight by unknown people and the religious were taken away. We do not know where they are," Bishop Philippe Stevens said.
"The act is not yet claimed but we imagine who is behind this kidnapping," the Bishop added.
An unidentified priest from Vicenza told Vatican Radio the kidnappers seized Sister Gilberte, but left nuns from Cameroon. Vatican Radio say officials had not ruled out involvement by Islamic fundamentalist group Boko Haram.
This terrorist organization has warned Cameroon to stay out of its fight with the Nigerian military, threatening to carry its war for an Islamic state into the neighboring country.
Pope Francis is said to be aware of the kidnapping and released a statement saying he "hopes for a rapid and positive solution to the affair."
In the meantime, Italy has cautioned against travel to the area. The location is only 20 miles away from the border with Nigeria because of the risk of "kidnappings due to presence of jihadist elements coming from Nigeria."
The priests were assigned from the Vicenza diocese in northern Italy.
Father Gianantonio had written to his home diocese last month saying local authorities had advised him to travel with a police escort.
"Even if on the surface you do not notice anything in particular that is alarming, it is palpable in our feelings and our conversations," he wrote in the letter dated last month.
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