Africa

Gloria Cecilia Narvaez biography: 13 things about Colombian nun

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Gloria Cecilia Narvaez Argoti is a Colombian teacher and nun of the Congregation of the Franciscan Sisters of Mary Immaculate. Here are 13 more things about her:

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  1. She was born in Pasto, Colombia. She is Rosita Argoti de Narváez‘s daughter. (a)
  2. She is Edgar Narváez Argoti, Sr.‘s sister. He is a schoolteacher in Pasto. (a)
  3. As a teacher, she worked not only in Colombia but also in Mexico and Benin. (b)
  4. She worked as a missionary in Karangasso, Nafanga, Koutiala Cercle, Sikasso Region, Mali where she held catechism classes for children and young people. (b)(c)
  5. On February 7, 2017, she was kidnapped by the Macina Liberation Front in Karangasso near the border with Burkina Faso. (b)(c)(d)
  6. On July 1, 2017, the Group for the Support of Islam and Muslims (GSIM), the branch of Al-Qaida in Mali, claimed responsibility for her kidnapping on February 7, 2017. (d)
  7. In January 2018, her kidnappers released a video showing her in good health conditions. In the video, she appealed for Pope Francis’s intervention. (b)
  8. On February 7, 2020, the Church in Mali united for a day of prayer for her release. (b)
  9. In September 2020, her mother died at the age of 87. (a)
  10. She shared captivity with French doctor Sophie Petronin, who was released in October 2020. After Petronin’s release, she was transferred to the GSIM. (a)
  11. She was 57 years old when she wrote a letter to her family dated February 3, 2021. It was handwritten, in Spanish, 11 lines long, in capital letters and in blue ballpoint pen. Translated in English, she wrote in part, “I send everyone my warmest greetings. May the good Lord bless them and grant them health. I have been held prisoner for four years, and now I am with a new group.” She ended the letter with, “May they all pray a great deal for me. May God bless them all. I am hopeful that God will help me to regain my freedom. Your loving sister, Gloria.” (a)
  12. In March 2021, her brother Edgar received her letter dated February 3, 2021 via Red Cross International. (a)(b)
  13. On October 9, 2021, she was released by her kidnappers. Dressed in a yellow robe and headscarf, she met with Mali’s interim president Assimi Goita. (e)(f)
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