July 10 is day of prayer for Fr. Bossi

The Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions posted in its campaign blog for the release of Father Bossi that they will offer prayers Tuesday, exactly a month after Bossi was kidnapped by still unknown captors in Payao, Zamboanga Sibugay province.  

The declaration of a day of prayer was meant not only for Bossi's release but also for his abductors.

"A Day of Prayer exactly a month after the abduction of Fr. Giancarlo Bossi, so that the Lord will give him enough courage, hope, and patience. Day of prayer for his abductors too, in the hope that "God will touch their hearts and they will repent."

PIME launched the plan in Rome where their headquarters is based. PIME head Fr. GianBattista Zanchi sent a letter informing PIME communities around the world about the special day of prayers. 

"Together with the family, friends, and parishioners of Fr. Giancarlo, we are waiting with hope for the news of his release. However, we have to say that, as of today, no one has claimed responsibility, nor do we know why he was abducted," Father Zanchi said.

The PIME stressed they welcomed initiatives and manifestations at different levels asking for the release of Fr. Giancarlo.

"But at the same time, prayers should not be forgotten: we are in the hands of God," he said.

Among those asked to help is Mindanao's Bishops-Ulama Forum, where there is inter-religious dialogue between influential Christian and Muslim religious leaders working for peace in Mindanao.

Manila-based media reported that photos sent through Zamboanga City-based Claretian priest Angel Calvo, a close friend of Bossi's, were confirmed to be of the priest.

It was not clear who sent the photos to Calvo as he stressed to the media the photos were  not from his captors.

PIME refused to post the photos in its blog.  

"We can see them on cellphones, TV and newspapers. Taken in an undisclosed place where there are trees of a young forest. He is wearing the same clothes he wore on the day of his kidnapping. The cinelas (slippers) are red and new. There are rubber shoes too left on the ground. Containers of water suggests that they are hiking up in some higher places, maybe mountains, where the air is much thin and cooler," the post described what was on the photos.

"Other things are inside these pictures, but we do not care! We will never paste them in this blog. They make us sad. We like other pictures; those of the day of father Giancarlo's liberation," according to the PIME statement. 

The statements came as Margherita Boniver, member of the Italian Parliament, have started talking with government and other officials in Manila and in Zamboanga City for priest's release.  

Nearly a month after his abduction the Armed Forces of the Philippines still could not ascertain if Bossi is still alive and who are his captors.

But National Security Adviser Norberto Gonzales tagged the Abu Sayyaf as the group holding the Italian priest. He admitted there is "no quick fix to the problem."

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