Kidnappings

The Latest

Father Jude Nwachukwu (left) and Father Kenneth Kanwa were kidnapped from their parish rectory in the Diocese of Pankshin in Nigeria on Feb. 1, 2024.

Two priests kidnapped from parish rectory in Nigeria

Feb 6, 2024

By Jude Atemanke

A religious missionary order in Nigeria is appealing for the safe release of two of its members who were abducted... Read more

People walk by the entrance of the Congregation of Sisters of St. Anne in Port-au-Prince, Jan. 22, 2024. Eight people, including six nuns, were kidnapped Jan. 19 in Haiti's capital Port-au-Prince, according to the country's association of religious orders, amid an ongoing upswing in abductions.

Abducted Haitian nuns released amid ongoing gang violence 

Jan 25, 2024

By Matthew Santucci

The release of the six religious sisters, along with their two drivers, was confirmed to Vatican News by Archbishop Max... Read more

Archbishop of Port-au-Prince Max Leroy Mésidor.

Catholic Church in Haiti holds day of prayer for release of 6 kidnapped nuns, others

Jan 24, 2024

By Andrés Henríquez

A day of prayer, meditation, and Eucharistic adoration was held Jan. 24 to intercede for the release of the people... Read more

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Priest says migrants in northern Mexico are being kidnapped on a constant basis

Jan 5, 2024

By Diego López Colín

Mexican authorities reported Jan. 3 the rescue of 31 migrants who had been kidnapped the night of Dec. 30 on... Read more

Nigerian priest Father Kingsley Eze was kidnapped Nov. 30, 2023, traveling to a sick call.

Parish priest in Nigeria abducted while answering sick call

Dec 5, 2023

By Agnes Aineah

Father Kingsley Eze, parish priest of St. Michael’s Umuekebi Catholic Church in Nigeria’s Imo state, was kidnapped Nov. 30 and... Read more

Brother Godwin Eze.

‘I am prepared to die a martyr’: Freed Nigerian monk recounts kidnapping, murder of brother monk

Nov 30, 2023

By Agnes Aineah

Brother Peter Olarewaju recounts the horrific kidnapping and torture he and other monks suffered, including the murder of a brother... Read more

Liverpool's Colombian midfielder Luis Diaz controls the ball during the English Premier League football match between Everton and Liverpool at Goodison Park in Liverpool, northwest England on Sept. 3, 2022.

Colombian bishops call for release of kidnapped father of soccer star and others 

Nov 9, 2023

By Andrés Henríquez

The bishops called for the immediate release of Luis Manuel Díaz, the kidnapped father of Colombian soccer star Luis Díaz,... Read more

Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah of the Diocese of Sokoto in Nigeria.

Nigerian bishop: Tens of thousands spent to rescue kidnapped priests, seminarians

Nov 3, 2023

By ACI Africa

Most of the money has been spent rescuing priests, seminarians, and other pastoral caregivers who were kidnapped by various militia... Read more

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Monk killed after kidnapping from Nigerian monastery eulogized as prayerful, easygoing

Oct 25, 2023

By Agnes Aineah

Brother Godwin Eze was kidnapped Oct. 17 alongside two others from the Benedictine monastery in Eruku, Nigeria, located in the... Read more

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Monk shot, body thrown in river following kidnapping at Nigerian monastery

Oct 24, 2023

By Agnes Aineah

A diocese in Nigeria announced that Brother Godwin Eze, a monk who was kidnapped with two others from a Benedictine... Read more

Three nuns, a seminarian, and the driver of the vehicle they were in were abducted in Nigeria’s Imo State on Oct. 5, 2023. The nuns’ order, the Missionary Daughters of Mater Ecclesiae, appealed for their safe release in an Oct. 6 statement. The group was released Oct. 13-14, 2023.

Religious congregation grateful after release of abducted nuns, seminarian in Nigeria

Oct 19, 2023

By Jude Atemanke

Three Catholic nuns, a seminarian, and their driver were abducted from Nigeria’s Abakaliki Diocese on Oct. 5 and released Oct.... Read more

Three nuns, a seminarian, and the driver of the vehicle they were in were abducted in Nigeria’s Imo State on Oct. 5, 2023. The nuns’ order, the Missionary Daughters of Mater Ecclesiae, appealed for their safe release in an Oct. 6 statement.

Sisters issue appeal for ‘safe release’ of 3 nuns who were abducted from Nigerian diocese

Oct 11, 2023

By Jude Atemanke

The vicar general of the Missionary Daughters of Mater Ecclesiae in Nigeria said five people were abducted Oct. 5 in... Read more

A road in Enugu State, Nigeria.

Human rights group to Nigeria security agents after priest’s kidnapping: ‘Act or resign’

Sep 20, 2023

By Agnes Aineah

The International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law has condemned the Sept. 16-17 kidnapping of more than 30... Read more

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Church prays for release of kidnapped priest and seminarian in Nigeria

Aug 9, 2023

By Diego Lopez Marina

Father Paul Sanogo and seminarian Melkiori Dominick Mahinini were kidnapped early in the morning of Aug. 3 in Niger state. Read more

Father Matthias Opara was freed May 28, 2023, after spending three days in captivity in Nigeria’s Catholic Archdiocese of Owerri.

Catholic priest in Nigeria freed on Pentecost Sunday after three days in captivity

May 30, 2023

By Jude Atemanke

Father Matthias Opara, a Nigerian Catholic priest who was abducted on May 26 while returning from a funeral, has been... Read more

Four Israeli families who have been fighting to see their children for eight and a half years met with Pope Francis at the Vatican on Dec. 21, 2022. Two young men are still alive, kidnapped by Hamas. Two others died, but their bodies were not returned, thus preventing a proper burial, one of the Jewish mitzvahs. Three are Jews, and one is Muslim.

Families of Israeli captives in Gaza Strip appeal to Pope Francis

Jan 8, 2023

By Andrea Gagliarducci

When Pope Francis once again launched the appeal for peace in the Holy Land, he probably had in his eyes... Read more

Five priests, a nun, and three lay people were abducted Sept. 16, 2022, after gunmen attacked their parish in Mamfe Diocese, Cameroon.

Priests abducted in Cameroon last month plead for release in new video

Oct 19, 2022

By Jude Atemanke

In the video circulated Oct. 19, one of the abductees provides updates about their welfare and pleads with their bishop... Read more

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Pastor and more than 80 others kidnapped in attacks on two Nigerian churches

Sep 23, 2022

By Zelda Caldwell

On Sept. 17, militants raided the Cherubim and Seraphim Church in Suleja in Niger state and abducted dozens of worshippers... Read more

Sister Suellen Tennyson, a member of the Congregation of the Marianites of Holy Cross, who was abducted in Burkina Faso April 4, 2022.

Abducted American religious sister freed in Burkina Faso

Aug 31, 2022

By Jonah McKeown

An American religious sister ministering in Burkina Faso who was kidnapped in April is free and safe after nearly five... Read more

Sr. Johannes Nwodo (R), Sr. Christabel Echemazu (L), Sr. Liberata Mbamalu (C), and Sr. Benita Agu, freed from captivity in Nigeria's Imo State, Aug. 23, 2022.

Kidnapped Nigerian religious sisters released

Aug 23, 2022

By Jonah McKeown

Four religious sisters who were kidnapped while on their way to Mass Aug. 21 have been released, according to their... Read more