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Priest abducted in the Philippines
Posted By Eric Sammons On October 12, 2009 @ 8:57 am In Miscellaneous | Comments Disabled
Fr. Michael Sinnott, an Irish Columban priest stationed in the Philippines, was abducted last night by six heavily-armed men. From the AP :
The six gunmen entered the Columban House in Pagadian city, Zamboanga del Sur province, and dragged Michael Sinnott into a van in front of his horrified aides, regional police commander Chief Supt. Angelo Sunglao said…
The van was later found abandoned and burned near the convent. The kidnappers then took the priest away by sea on board a motor boat toward a town called Tukuran, Sunglao said, citing fishermen who saw the abduction.
Police have been dispatched to pursue the kidnappers and rescue Sinnott, he said.
No group has claimed responsibility for the kidnapping, but suspicion could fall on Muslim guerrillas who have been fighting for a separate homeland in this region of the predominantly Catholic Philippines for decades and have in the past kidnapped foreigners, including priests.
Al-Qaida-linked Abu Sayyaf militants and insurgents from the larger Moro Islamic Liberation Front have a presence in the vast Zamboanga peninsula but Sunglao said it was too early to pinpoint any group.
Sinnott’s group, the Missionary Society of St. Columban, confirmed his abduction, saying he was taking an evening stroll in the convent’s garden when he was taken by the gunmen. The group appealed for prayers for his safe recovery.
Sinnott has worked in the Philippines for decades. The group said he was first assigned in the southern Philippines between 1957-66, then returned in 1976. He has been involved in a school for handicapped children since 1998.
Pray for Fr. Sinnott and his abductors and never forget that there are still places in this world where being a Christian is a dangerous vocation.
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