“This morning, before the celebration of the Holy Mass for the opening of the Synod of Bishops, the Pope greeted the Colombian nun Gloria Cecilia Narváez Argori, kidnapped in Mali in 2017 and recently released,” reported the director of the Office of Holy See Press, Matteo Bruni.
According to Vatican News, Gloria Cecilia Narváez, a 59-year-old Colombian missionary from the Congregation of the Franciscan Sisters of Mary Immaculate, was released. The nun, kidnapped on February 7, 2017, shared captivity in Mali with Father Gigi Maccalli, released on October 8, 2020, with a priest of the Society of African Missions who was kidnapped in 2018 in Niger, and with other Western hostages.
Sister Gloria has been released exactly one year after the release of Father Gigi, thanks to the work of the crisis unit of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Intelligence.
Confirmation and joy of the Colombian Episcopate
Through a video message, Monsignor Mario de Jesús Álvarez Gómez, president of the Mission Commission of the Episcopal Conference of Colombia, confirmed the release of the religious Gloria Cecilia Narváez.
“As president of the Mission Commission of the Colombian Episcopate, it is with immense joy that I announce the release of Sister Gloria Cecilia Narváez, a religious of the Congregation of the Franciscan Sisters of Mary Immaculate, who was recently released there in Mali Africa,” affirmed the prelate.
The bishop of Istmina – Tadó, when expressing his joy for the release of Sister Gloria Cecilia, thanked the efforts made by the Holy See, the Apostolic Nunciature of Colombia, and the Episcopal Conference of Colombia.
“We give glory and blessing to God for this joyous moment of the universal Church and the Church in Colombia,” concluded the prelate.
According to the Vatican media, the nun had been kidnapped by four armed men in the parish of Karangasso, on the border between Mali and Burkina Faso, 400 kilometers east of Bamako, where she had been a missionary for six years along with three other nuns.
A few months after her kidnapping, in July 2017, a video emerged claimed by Al Qaeda. At the same time, a message sent to her brother through the Red Cross revealed that she was a prisoner of a new group. The Bamako Christian community organized various Eucharistic celebrations and prayed for her. In 2020, three years after the rapture, the country’s Catholic Church organized a day of prayer for her release.