Thousands mourn Italian nuns killed in Burundi

2014-09-10 18:21
Mass for murdered Burundi nuns. (Esdras Ndikumana, AFP)

Mass for murdered Burundi nuns. (Esdras Ndikumana, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Bujumbura - Thousands of mourners in Burundi celebrated the lives of three Italian nuns brutally murdered this week, in tearful farewells before their bodies were taken to Democratic Republic of Congo for burial.

The emotional and sombre mass in Burundi's main Roman Catholic Cathedral was attended by as many as 3 000, including the vice president and top politicians.

Mourners sobbed as Archbishop of Bujumbura Evariste Ngonagoye praised the life of service the three nuns had given in the impoverished nation, and the "inhuman" crimes of the killer.

The three Roman Catholic nuns were named as Olga Raschietti, 83, Lucia Pulici, 75, and Bernadetta Boggian, aged 79.

The three will be buried on Thursday in the nearby town of Bukavu, in neighbouring DR Congo, where their order has a church.

"I loved them, everybody loved them very much...they helped the poor, they have been with us during the hard times of the war," said one mourner, who gave her named only as Alice, who had come from DRC to accompany the bodies.

Pope Francis on Monday issued his condolences.

"The Holy Father begs the Lord to welcome into his kingdom of peace and light these three faithful and devout nuns," he said in a statement.

Burundian Vice President Prosper Bazombanza has said the government was "appalled by such barbarity".

Police have arrested a man who they said has confessed to the killing of the nuns in twin attacks in their convent.

On Sunday afternoon two nuns were stabbed to death and the killer then battered one with a rock.

Hours later, before dawn on Monday, another nun in the same convent was killed, her body beaten and head hacked off.


Read more on:    pope francis  |  burundi  |  drc  |  central africa  |  east africa

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
7 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/Sport
 

WATCH: Man films himself going down water slide upside down as things go very wrong…

What is at first an exciting tummy-turning adventure stunt, quickly turns into a scarily bad idea caught on camera. Take a look:

 
 

You won't want to miss...

Best date night restaurants in South Africa
WATCH: Ryan Reynolds offers fans a free tattoo in new Deadpool 2 teaser
Should you date your co-worker?
Hip Cape Town bars to discover this summer
Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.