» 06/22/2007, 00.00
The search for Fr. Bossi restarts
The army confirms that it has restarted collaboration with Moro Islamic Liberation Front separatists, disbanded for technical reasons. Clarifications of an appeal.
Zamboanga (AsiaNews) – Collaboration between the Philippine army and Moro Islamic Liberation Front separatists, has resumed in the search for Fr. Giancarlo Bossi, missionary from the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions, abducted in the southern island of Mindanao June 10th last.
The search had been called off due to “technical problems”. As each year, in fact the mandate for the Common action group instituted by Manila and the rebel leaders had expired. Either way, explains Fr. Sandolo – regional superior for PIME in the Philippines – to AsiaNews this interruption “is of no particular concern. There is real commitment from all sides to resolving this case; this is merely a technical hiccup”.
Military sources confirm the reports adding “we have requested complete cooperation from local authorities in Sultan Naga Dimaporo, Nunungan and Salvador, to help us locate to locate the kidnapped missionary”.
In the meantime, messages of solidarity are pouring in for the priest. Among them the Liberation Appeal, addressed “above all to the kidnappers, for the immediate and unconditional release of Fr. Bossi, secondly to all competent authorities, in the hope that every possible step is taken to insure the hostages release.”. The appeal was originally attributed to PIME missionaries in the Philippines. But as can be read in the PIME Philippine Blog dedicated to Fr. Bossi, “it is not a PIME Philippines initiative. It is simple a link sent to us and while we share its concern for Fr. Giancarlo Bossi’s release we do not share its political opinions”.
A blog to ask for the release of Fr. Giancarlo Bossi
Missionaries from the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions in the Philippines have opened a virtual diary on the internet, to gather messages and prayers from all over the world and speak about their view of developments in the case of Fr. Bossi, kidnapped June 10th last in Mindanao.
MILF signs peace agreement with Philippine government, World Interfaith Harmony Week to be held in February
Accession to the World Interfaith Harmony Week was voted October 8th. Confirmation coincides with today’s ceremony for the signing of the peace agreement between the Philippine government and Moro rebels. The initiative was sponsored by the National Ulema Conference of the Philippines (NUCP), the Catholic Church and Silsilah group for interreligious dialogue. It will be held on the sidelines of the construction of the new autonomous region of Mindanao.
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A great truth about Fr Bossi remains hidden; he is a missionary who witnesses Christ
The case of Fr. Bossi inspired Fr. Piero Gheddo, PIME, to reflect on the nature of mission, in an insert broadcast by Radio Maria on July 16th. Here we propose the concluding part of his reflection.
Muslim Politician from Mindanao: Catholic education helped me in the commitment to peace
Nabil Tan, a Muslim and vice governor of the Autonomous Region of Mindanao, speaks of his experience as a student in a Catholic institution. For him, sharing and respect for different religions is one of the keys to the peace process.
Fr. Bossi, “gentle giant” of the mission in Mindanao
Fr. Gianni Sandalo, superior of the mission of PIME in the Philippines, describes the personality of the missionary that was kidnapped and underlines how he was loved and respected by the local people. He had not received any threats and was peacefully going about his work. MILF has denied any involvement in this case.
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