Loading
Italian missionary priest freed by Abu Sayyaf, Benedict XVI rejoices
Fr. Giancarlo Bossi at a press conference after being freed
Fr. Giancarlo Bossi at a press conference after being freed

.- The Italian missionary priest, Fr. Giancarlo Bossi, who was kidnapped this past June 10th was is now a free man. Pope Benedict XVI, who has been following the situation closely and has been praying for his release every day, has said he is filled with joy to hear of Fr. Bossi’s release.

Father Bossi was recovered by police in the southern Filipino town of Karumatan yesterday, after having been held captive for 40 days by followers of the terrorist group Abu Sayyaf.

Throughout the ordeal, the identity of the organization responsible for his kidnapping was uncertain, with some saying that the Islamic separatist group the Moro Islamic Liberation Front was responsible and others claiming that it was Abu Sayyaf. Fr. Bossi put the guesswork to rest, saying, "From the beginning, they told me they were Abu Sayyaf.”

According to Fr. Bossi, the motive behind his kidnapping was purely, “to have some ransom.” Rumors had circulated that money changed hands to secure his release, but the Filipino Interior Secretary Ronaldo Puno, who was with Bossi at the news conference, said that demands for ransom were ignored. The International Herald Tribune reported that the ransom demanded for his release was $1 million.

Although he lost weight due to the diet of rice and dried fish he subsisted on for over a month, Bossi said he was otherwise unharmed.

If anything good came out of the ordeal, he joked at a press conference, it was that he had to stop smoking. A self-professed chain smoker, Fr. Bossi recounted how one night when he was trying to climb a mountain with his captors, he said to himself, "…if I want to survive, I have to keep my breathing. Better stop smoking - and I stopped smoking."

Reaction to the safe return of Fr. Bossi continues to come in from all corners of the world. The director of the Holy See Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi, conveyed that his being freed, "brings great joy to the entire Church and also for the Holy Father." The Italian and Filipino Bishops Conferences have also responded with joy to the news. 

When Fr. Bossi was asked what he would like to do now that he is free he replied that if his superiors let him, he would go back to Payao, a fishing town in Zamboanga Sibugay where he has been ministering. "I have to go back to Payao," he said. "My heart is still in Payao…. They say that a priest must also be a father and so as the father of my community it is my duty to return to my people, to my children.”


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic
Apr
21

Liturgical Calendar

April 21, 2014

Monday within the Octave of Easter

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 28:8-15

Gospel
Date
04/21/14
04/20/14
04/19/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Acts 2:14, 22-33
Gospel:: Mt 28:8-15

Saint of the Day

Holy Thursday »

Saint
Date
04/21/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 28:8-15

Homily
Date
04/21/14
04/20/14
04/19/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: