After a recent attack at a Missionaries of Charity convent in Yemen claimed the lives of four of the sisters there, the bishop overseeing the area said he has no doubt they died as martyrs.
“For me there is no doubt that the sisters have been victims of hatred – hatred against our faith,” Bishop Paul Hinder told CNA March 6.
“The Missionaries of Charity died as martyrs: as martyrs of charity, as martyrs because they witnessed Christ and shared the lot of Jesus on the Cross,” he said, pointing to one of the prayers they recited daily.
The short prayer asks that “Lord, teach me to be generous. Teach me to serve you as you deserve; to give and not to count the cost, to fight and not to heed the wounds, to toil and not to seek for rest, to labor and not to ask for reward.”
Recited after their morning Mass and before breakfast, the prayer is one of the last that the sisters would have prayed before being killed.
Although he doesn’t like to speak of reasons “for an unreasonable act,” Bishop Hinder would be difficult not to see that the event was motivated by “a misled religious mind.”
The bishop, who serves as apostolic vicar of the Arabian Peninsula, said that he believes the sisters were a target because certain radical groups in the country “simply do not support the presence of Christians who serve the poorest of the poor.”
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