This afternoon at the Vatican’s Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi issued a statement about two Italian religious sisters who were kidnapped over two weeks ago in Kenya. The Vatican spokesman said that Pope Benedict is closely following any news of the sisters and is praying for them and their families.
On November 9, two Italian Catholic sisters were kidnapped by bandits in a night time ambush in the small town of El Wak in North-Eastern Kenya on the Somali border.
Maria Teresa Olevero and Catarina Giraudo are both members of the Contemplative Missionary Movement of Fr. Charles De Foucauld. Sister Maria Teresa has been in Kenya since 1972 while Sister Catarina, a nurse, has been there since 1974. The sisters provided medical and nutritional care to malnourished children, expectant mothers and the elderly.
On Thursday afternoon, Fr. Lombardi noted that, "More than a fortnight has passed since the two Italian nuns, Sr. Maria Teresa Olivero and Sr. Caterina Giraudo, were abducted in Kenya, where they are well-known for their generous dedication to the very poor.”
He related that, “The Holy Father is following the protraction of their kidnapping with concern and remains close in prayer to the suffering, not only of the two kidnapped nuns, but also to that of their families and of the ‘Contemplative Missionary Movement of Fr. de Foucauld,’ of which they are members.
“The hope is that this painful and gravely unjust situation, of which entirely innocent and praiseworthy people are victims, may be resolved as soon as possible."