A 10 year-old girl who was kidnapped and eventually freed in Colombia will travel to the Vatican to meet Pope Benedict on Dec. 12, the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
“The Holy Father followed closely the kidnapping of Nohra Valentina and prayed for her release,” Colombia’s ambassador to the Holy See, Cesar Mauricio Velasquez, said on Nov. 7.
“Now he is pleased to learn of her visit to the Holy See.”
A reporter from the Colombian daily El Tiempo traveled to the town of Fortul to deliver the news personally to Valentina—the daughter of the town’s mayor who was kidnapped for 19 days in late September and freed on Oct. 17.
Velasquez also said the Pope sent a message calling for the release of all the kidnapped in Colombia and urging that children not be involved in the country’s ongoing civil conflict.
Valentina and her family will attend the Mass Pope Benedict will celebrate on Dec. 12 in St. Peter’s Basilica to commemorate the independence bicentennials of various Latin American countries, including Colombia.