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Nigeria: Catholic priest killed, another kidnapped in attack on parish

The herdsmen’s goal is to terrorize Christians into fleeing the area, freeing up their land for use by the attackers and their associates. The kidnappings give the attackers a source of income in the form of ransoms.

Meanwhile, the Nigerian government continues to do little or nothing to stop this activity.

For previous coverage of the persecution of Christians in Nigeria from ChristianPersecution.com, see here.

“Catholic priest killed, another kidnapped in attack on Nigerian parish,” by Courtney Mares, Catholic News Agency, May 21, 2021:

Gunmen attacked a Catholic parish in northern Nigeria Thursday, killing one priest and kidnapping another.

Fr. Alphonsus Bello was found dead May 21, the morning after his parish, St. Vincent Ferrer Catholic Church in the Diocese of Sokoto, was attacked by armed bandits. He was 33.

Bello was kidnapped along with another priest, Fr. Joe Keke, 75, who remains missing, according to a statement from the diocese in the extreme northwest of Nigeria.

Fr. Cornelius Tagwai, chancellor of Sokoto diocese, appealed for prayers for “the immediate and safe return of Fr. Keke and for the peaceful repose of Fr. Bello.”

After the attack, Fr. Bello’s body was left in farmland behind the local catechetical training school….

On May 17, a Catholic priest serving in Nigeria’s northern Kaduna archdiocese was kidnapped with 10 other people in an attack by gunmen that killed eight people.

Two days later, bandits reportedly attacked an Assemblies of God church building in northern Nigeria, also killing eight people, according to local media.

Nigerians have suffered attacks from Boko Haram since 2009. Insecurity in the country has also worsened due to the actions of the predominantly Muslim Fulani militia, who often clash with farmers over grazing lands….

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