Friday night update on kidnapped Fr Michael Sinnott
Friday night update on kidnapped Father Michael Sinnot
discussed other matters that were to be brought up at the TFSinnott
which was meeting at 3pm.
I would have simply said that all one needed to do was look at his
life and you saw Mission in Action. As it was I said something about the risks that are all part of the commitment to mission.
objectionable and might just be the pressure point on those who can put pressure on those holding him to do the 'honourable thing' and free him.
there are on-going diplomatic contacts.
thanked them all for their efforts to get Father Mick freed - they have all been using their own resources to help. There was very free sharing which was inspiring and encouraging. Father Tommy remarked on the depth of feeling in the group for Father Mick, who has been a member for a long time. They are very affected by his abduction. Sultan Maguid was present and he expressed his sorrow but also his hope that the Forum would continue and strengthen.
and all who are helping. (The Columbans recently sold their house in Cebu and will be vacating it over the weekend). I will return to Pagadian on Sunday. And then I will assess what to do.
An Appeal for the Freedom of Fr. Michael Sinnott
(A statement by Peace Advocates Zamboanga.)
THE kidnapping of Irish priest Fr. Michael Sinnott last Sunday, October 11, in Pagadian City, Zamboanga del Sur is yet another serious assault against our hallowed belief in the sacredness of every human life, against the democratic order that enables us to live in dignity, security and peace as a community and society of God-fearing and law-abiding citizens.
The old age of 79 year-old Fr. Sinnott and the fact that he devoted much of his life to serve the poor and marginalized people of Mindanao, especially those in our home region, including indigenous and peoples of other religious faiths, make this kidnapping extraordinarily cruel and saddening. The value of Fr. Sinnott’s life and work is beyond any ransom price. For its despicable and unspeakable evil and barbarity do we strongly condemn this kidnapping of a holy man.
We, therefore, urge and appeal to our civilian, police and military authorities to exercise their duty and exert all efforts for the early and safe freedom of Fr. Sinnott. We propose that appropriate rewards be given to any person/s that will promptly help bring this about.
We appeal to our fellow citizens, including civil society peace and community development workers, to remain true and strong in the face of this assault against our shared principles and beliefs. We are again challenged by this crime.
We commiserate with the fellow priests in the Missionary Society of St. Columban of Fr. Sinnott in the anguish that his kidnapping may cause them, as they cause in us as well. We are confident – as we stand in solidarity with the Columban community in the Philippines – that no kidnapping, no act of violence against missionaries will ever, as it never did in the past, stop them in their mission to uplift peoples through the power of their faith, benefits of education, and emancipation through social justice and freedom. Indeed, the always divine yet often difficult and dangerous pursuit of this noble, life-giving mission holds the essence of true martyrdom, which calls all to work in the service of others no matter the personal cost.
We appeal to people to pray for Fr. Sinnott, for God to strengthen and preserve him in this his hour of great trial. And yes, let us most of all pray for the captors, that God may overflow their hearts with His miracle of repentance, mercy and grace. “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” – (Mark 11:24).
Zamboanga City, October 14, 2009.
A Press Release by the Consortium of Bangsamoro Civil Society
The abduction of Fr. Michael Sinnot in Pagadian City on October 11, 2009 is an act of utter savagery, which is diametrically opposed to the tenets of Islam and Christianity. This has no place under a democratic and civilized society.
As we join in the vehement condemnation of Fr. Sinnot’s abduction in the highest terms, we are very much saddened by the fact that, albeit huge funds appropriated by Congress for security, intelligence and national defense, the government has remained inefficient to protect and preserve the safety of the citizenry, whether Muslim or Christian. The abduction of Fr. Sinnot is a classic example of this, as it had happened at the very heart of the city where law enforcers have their routine patrols.
Fr. Michael Sinnot is an Irish priest who is a member of the Missionaries of St. Columban. He had been in the Philippines since the 1980s, serving as missionary. Prior to his abduction he founded and even served as coordinator of the Hangop Kabataan in 2008, a dwelling place for both Muslim and Christian children who need special attention; children with physically and mentally challenged like blind and deaf.
Despite his old age of 79 and his problematic condition, Fr. Sinnot’s friends and peers best know him for being energetic and consistently attentive in all of his undertakings. He is also admired by them for being humble, soft spoken, approachable, kind and caring like a father or a brother.
As we call on the perpetrators for the immediate-unconditional release of Fr. Michael Sinnot, we caution the military and the Philippine National Police to be professional in carrying out their rescue operations to spare the civilian from harm and no “white wash” be involved in the subsequent investigations to identify and apprehend the real perpetrators of this heinous crime. We urge also both the leaders of the Moro and Non-Moro civil society organizations to unite and share their part in the collective work for the immediate and unconditional release of Fr. Michael Sinnot.
Adopted and signed in Cotabato city, this 13th day of October 2009.