#BreakingNews Catholic Church Attacked and Burned as 5 Priests, a Nun and 3 Lay People Kidnapped with a Ransom Demanded - Please PRAY!

 A Catholic Church was attacked and burned,  with 5 Priests,  a Nun and 3 Lay People Kidnapped.  A Catholic Church,  in Cameroon,  Africa,  named Saint Mary of Nchang was attacked by armed men on Friday,  September 16th,  2022. The attackers set fire to the church and kidnapped five priests,  a nun and 3 lay people (a catechist,  a cook and a young woman).  A ransom is now being demanded by the kidnappers of these 9 people. 

The bishop of the local diocese removed the Blessed Sacrament,  Eucharist,  from the burnt church. 

Vatican News reports that the Saint Marie church in Nchang,  in the diocese of Mamfe,  was attacked and set on fire in the night by unidentified armed men.  In the aftermath,  the hostages were taken to an unknown destination in the forests surrounding the village of Nchang. 

In their statement published on Saturday,  September 17th,  the bishops of the ecclesiastical province of Bamenda condemned this heinous,  unprecedented attack,  for which no concrete reason has been given to date. 

Since the beginning of the Anglophone crisis in 2016, "the people have suffered terribly and men and women of God have been easy targets of kidnappers,  torturers and unscrupulous gunmen",  note the bishops.   In addition to the Catholic Church,  these attacks also target the Presbyterian and Baptist Churches in Cameroon,  the statement said. 

Bishops of Cameroon wrote,  “We pray for protection and at the same time for forgiveness of offenders like Christ on the Cross who prayed: 'Father,  forgive them,  they do not know what they are doing'”. 

The Church,  which supports dialogue and the path of reconciliation,  is not spared from the country's conflicts.  Pope Francis had prayed and launched an appeal for the return of a "true and lasting peace" in Cameroon. 

Since 2016, the northwestern and southwestern regions of Cameroon have been in the grip of a bloody conflict between the English-speaking separatists and the military of the French-speaking majority state. 

The violence has claimed more than 6,000 lives and displaced about one million people. 

Image Source: Cameroon News Agency Screenshot from FB
Text Sources: Vatican News and Fides