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Benedictine nuns targeted by shootings in Missouri

A convent of Benedictine nuns in rural Missouri is raising money to build a fence around their convent after suffering three shooting attacks during lent.


This lent, there have been three shootings that have hit the abbey of the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles. This represents a serious increase in firearm activity that stretches back for years, Aleteia reports.

The Abess, Mother Cecilia,  said that the area is normally not a high crime area, so the shootings’ unusual nature is a source of concern that the nuns may be targeted.

Local police and the sheriff’s office are carrying on an investigation and helping to provide security.

“As of now, there are no available updates on the investigation, but I do know that if there is no resolution in the next week or so, there will be a number to call for anyone who has information,” Mother Cecilia said in an email Friday to Aleteia. “A generous reward will be offered in exchange for tips leading to the apprehension of the perpetrator.”

On the evening of Ash Wednesday this year, Feb. 17th, some shots seemed to come from the country road that runs along the north side of the sisters’ property. 

A few days later, “another shot was fired, seeming (to come) from within our property, at the west wall of the church,” Mother Cecilia added. 

On the 24th of March, just after 11 p.m., “loud gunshots were heard by many Sisters in the Abbey,” Sister said a letter to the abbey’s supporters. “Some of the Sisters arose but soon returned to sleep, as we have sadly become desensitised on account of the many incidents of inappropriate activity around our monastery.” The shots, again, seemed to come from the country road that runs along the north side of the property.

“In the morning, Mother Abbess discovered two bullet holes in her bedroom,” said the letter. A bullet entered the exterior wall, “punched a hole beneath the Sacred Heart picture,” and pierced the opposite wall, stopped by the shower on the other side. 

Mother Cecilia “was sleeping several feet from the bullet’s trajectory,” the statement noted. 


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