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Kidnapped priest appeals for Pope’s help


A Salesian priest kidnapped in Yemen on March 4 personally appealed for Pope Francis’ help in a video posted to YouTube Dec. 26.

“Dear Pope Francis…as a father, please take care of my life,” Father Tom Uzhunnalil said. “My health is deteriorating; I am in need of hospitalization soon. Please come to my help quickly.”

The priest also urged the Church and government in his home nation of India to come to his aid.

“Several months have gone by and my captors have made many contacts with the government of India to get me released,” the priest said. “I am very sad that nothing has been done seriously in my regard.

The five-minute video was the first communication from Fr. Tom since his abduction March 4 during an armed attack on a Missionaries of Charity-run retirement home in Aden, the provincial capital of Yemen. The priest had overgrown hair and spoke slowly from a prepared script.

“I request also the other bishops all over the world to come to my help to save my life,” Fr. Tom said. “I very much depressed. I request also my fellow human beings of different governments to consider me as a human person and come to my help on a humanitarian level to get me released and save my life.”

“I need your help. Please help me.”

Pope Francis did appeal for the priest’s release April 10 after his Sunday Regina Caeli address in St. Peter’s Square.

Read more at Catholic World Report.

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