4 killed during Catholic procession in Burkina Faso; third attack on Christians in 2 weeks

A church in Burkina Faso | (Photo: Khym54 via Flickr)

Four Catholics carrying a statue of the Virgin Mary were killed in northern Burkina Faso Monday, one day after a priest and five other congregants were killed by gunmen in a neighboring province.

Fides, a news agency of the Vatican, reports that an attack on Monday occurred as four Catholics were bringing the statue back to church after a Marian procession took place in the northern municipality of Zimtenga in the country’s Bam province.

The Catholic news agency notes that the procession started in the victim’s home village of Singa and ended in the village of Kayon, which is located about 6 miles away.A spokesman for the Ouagadougou Cathedral told AFP that “a group of terrorists” intercepted the worshipers as they were moving through the village of Ouahigouya.

One source told the Burkina Faso News Agency that the perpetrators halted the procession and let minors go.

However, four adults were “executed” and the statue of Mary was destroyed.AFP reports that Paul Ouedraogo, the president of the Episcopal Conference of Burkina Faso and Niger, told an assembly of bishops in the nation’s capital Ouagadougou that individuals attacked the procession “claiming four victims.”

Christians in the West African nation, a former French colony, have suffered three attacks in a little over two weeks as the country is experiencing a rise in Islamic extremist violence.

Monday’s attack followed an assault by gunmen on a church in neighboring Sanmatenga province during mass. Reports suggest that between 20 to 30 militants attacked the church, leading to the deaths of the parish priest, Siméon Yampa, and five churchgoers.

Source: The Christian Post