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  • » 03/04/2016, 15.19


    Card. Gracias: Sisters of Mother Teresa killed in Yemen, witnesses to the love of Christ

    card. Oswald Gracias

    The Archbishop of Mumbai’s moving testament to the for four religious killed today along with 10 civilians in a raid "for religious reasons" by armed men from Aden. Until the end, they carried out the task the Missionaries of Charity: quench the thirst for Christ through service to the needy. In the evening, Eucharistic adoration and prayer for Fr. Tom Uzhunnalil, Salesian priest kidnapped in the attack.


    Mumbai (AsiaNews) - The gruesome murder of the 4 Missionaries of Charity has plunged the Church of India and Asia into deep sadness. We are grieving beacause of this tragedy, it is a personal loss for the Church in India, as Sr. Anselm was one of our very own, who sacrificed everything to serve Jesus in Aden.  Despite of precarious situations, these brave and selfless Missionaries of Charity refused to leave even as fighting intensified.  The Missionaries of Charity continued to quench the thirst of Jesus in Aden, through  love, kindness, compassion, and selflessly .served without any consideration of their own safety, the most disadvantaged victims, through their work on humanitarian activities in hospitals, centers for the aged and the infirm and homes for poor and disadvantaged youth, they sought to risk their lives for the local people.

    “How can I satiate that thirst of God?”  was the daily prayer of these Missionaries of Charity in Yemen, the current fighting particularly  within Aden, has made it more difficult than ever, yet like Bl Mother Teresa of Kilkatta the only desire of the 4 Missionaries of Charity was to quench that thirst for souls was done out of personal love for Jesus," kept quenching the Thirst of Christ through their service for the people of Yemen. While we grieve and mourn the  snuffing off of their precious lives, we are consoled, that now as they behold the Beauty of Christ, their Blood will bring fruits of Peace for the people they served. God bless them with eternal happiness in His presence.

    The Church in India and Asia also prays for the safe return of another of our children, Fr. Tom Uzhunnalil, who hails from Kerala and studied theology at the College Kristu Jyoti Bangalore, Fr. Tom sdb is a Salesian from Province of Bangalore but has worked in Yemen for several years. The Salesians of India (the province of Bangalore) have communities in Yemen.

    Only four years ago, the Church celebrated the silver jubilee of the Salesian presence in Yemen, on September 7 2012 in Sana'a, Yemen's capital. This country is under the Apostolic Vicariate of Southern Arabia in the new constitution. The Salesians of Don Bosco, belonging to the Province of Bangalore, went to Yemen on the request of Msgr. Bernardo Gremoli, the then Vicar Apostolic of Arabia.

    The Missionaries of Charity (MC) were formally invited by the government of Yemen to take care of lepers and the elderly. Blessed Mother Teresa accepted the invitation, provided that it also allowed for priests to enter the country to offer spiritual help to the Missionaries. And so today, five Salesians work in Taiz, Hodeidah, Sana'a and Aden. These brothers are taking care of the spiritual needs of the sisters and also a parish community in those places. The Catholic population is made up exclusively of foreign workers from India, Philippines, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, etc...

    The Church in India prays for the safe return of our Fr. Tom, and tonight will offer Eucharistic Adoration for his wellbeing.
    (Nirmala Carvalho, collaborated)

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    See also

    08/04/2016 13:48:00 INDIA – YEMEN
    Mgr Menamparampil visits the family of Fr Tom, an example of courage and mission

    The Archbishop of Guwahati spoke about the Indian Salesian held by a Jihadi group in Yemen. The clergyman was aware of the risks he was taking, but always wanted to do this work. The prelate met with the family and saw the solidarity of Christians around the world.  The brother of the kidnap victim wept during a moment of prayer.

    10/03/2016 13:41:00 ITALY – YEMEN – INDIA
    Salesian Vicar: Still no news about Fr Tom, who was abducted after the Aden massacre

    The Kerala-born priest served as chaplain to the Sisters of Mother Teresa, four of whom were killed in their convent. He was in mission to Yemen for four years. His uncle Matthew, a Salesian as well, founded the mission. Fr Tom chose to stay in the country, even though he had the opportunity to leave. Salesians have been present in Yemen since 1987 to provide outreach for the few local Catholics and the many migrant workers.

    07/03/2016 14:13:00 YEMEN
    Vicar of Arabia: No news about abducted priest, Aden massacre survivor in a safe place

    Mgr Hinder said that "government channels” have been activated to determine Fr Tom’s fate. At present, it is still unclear whether he is alive or dead. The lone survivor, the mother superior, was moved “out of the country". Shocked, Yemenis condemn the attack. Mgr Ballin agrees with pope about "Too much indifference around this brutal affair.”

    09/03/2016 16:58:00 YEMEN
    Vicar of Arabia: Sister Sally, who survived the massacre of Aden, is fine but still in a state of shock

    Mgr Hinder met the superior of the Missionaries of Charity in Yemen, who is now safely abroad. She is “exhausted” but overall “doing reasonably well”. Now she needs “peace and quiet”. The fate of the abducted priest remains uncertain. Channels have been opened to secure his release but caution and prudence are required. The humanitarian situation in Yemen is uncertain with millions of people living in difficult conditions.

    14/09/2008 INDIA
    A dozen arrested over attack in New Delhi, 21 dead, 100 wounded
    Security forces have interrogated a dozen people, and hope to solve the case "soon". Responsibility for the attack has been claimed by an Islamic group that announces new attacks. The solidarity of the Catholic Church and of the international community, while the prime minister calls for "calm".

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