BRUTALITY AGAINST WOMEN RELIGIOUS IN BURUNDI

Three Nuns brutality Raped, Killed and Decapitated in Bunjubura – Burundi

Italian Nuns: Lucia Pulici, Olga Raschietti and Bernardetta Boggian

Italian Nuns: Lucia Pulici, Olga Raschietti and Bernardetta Boggian

Three Italian nuns were found killed, two of them raped and decapitated, over the weekend in the north of Burundi’s capital, officials and a priest in the African state said on Monday.  The Nuns were housed at Bukavu Convent in Bujumbura.

Father Mario Pulicini, who is responsible for the parish in a northern suburb of Bujumbura, named two of the nuns as Lucia Pulici, who was 75 and Olga Raschietti, 82. He said they were found decapitated in their dormitory on Sunday.

The third nun, 79-year-old Bernadetta Boggian, was found dead early on Monday morning. The killings appeared to have happened at two separate times, he said.

Earlier in the week, police said three suspects had been detained for questioning.  Information reaching ACWECA International states that A man has been arrested in Burundi for the brutal rape and murder of the three nuns allegedly because they occupied his land!

Christian Claude Butoyi, 33, confessed to the crime saying he wanted to retaliate because the nuns’ convent was “illegally occupying” his land.

“I raped and killed them because they were foreigners living on my land,” police spokesman Hermenegilde Harimenshi said.

The religious fratanity in Burundi and the world as large is trying to come to terms with this heinous act and the reason for act does not come near to fitting the punishment .

“This is the tragic outcome of an armed robbery by a mentally unbalanced person” – The Catholic diocese in Parma, Italy

“It is very difficult to know the reason behind the killing, but nothing can justify it” – Father Mario.

Following suit, the catholic community and the religious at large have come out strongly condemning this barbaric act.  News from the Vatican said Pope Francis was “greatly saddened” by the killings.  “Pope Francis has learned with great sadness of the murder of three nuns,” Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin said in a telegram sent on the pope’s behalf.

The pope offered condolences in the “tragic death” of the nuns to their families, the local parishioners and the sisters’ order, the Xavarian Missionary Sisters of Mary.

ACWECA International on behalf of the region resonate the Pope’s sentiments in condemning this brutality on the Women religious and calls upon the region to prayer for the sisters departed, their congregation and biological families.

Speaking from Rome, the newly appointed Secretary General of ACWECA; Sr. Eneless Chimbali SBVM said “we are saddened by this events and pray for the safety of all Women religious in the region and the entire world who leave the comfort of their homes convents)/Lands to serve the poor and trodden in the community”.  Just like the Parish Priest; Fr. Mario, Sr. Eneless thought that this was an act that did not fit the issue at hand.  She said, “other channels should have been followed.  May God have mercy on his soul”.

The two nuns had served in Burundi for seven years, after working several years in the east of another central African state, the Democratic Republic of Congo.

(Article by: Marie Njuguna – ACWECA Communications Dept)

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