Swiss nun helping address violence

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SISTER Lorena Jenal, a Franciscan Sister of Divine Providence of Baldegg, Switzerland, is among some church people who are addressing sorcery-related violence in the country.
According to a statement from the Catholic Bishops Conference in Port Moresby, Sister Lorena served as a missionary in PNG for 30 years.
On Dec 10, 2018, Sr Lorena received the International Weimar Award for human rights for her courageous work in advocating against sorcery accusation violence and rescuing scores of women who were victims of this terrible crime.
On Aug 10, 2020, the world will observe the First International Day against Sorcery Accusation Violence (SAV).
Sr Lorena recalled a sorcery-related incident in which a defenceless mother fought for her life on Aug 10, 2012, at a village in Southern Highlands.
Amidst the shouting and the chanting there, Sr Lorena boldly stood up to the evil and hideous crowd: “Stop the madness. Release the woman,” shouted the nun as she hurried to the village square.
The torturers then beat the Swiss-born missionary.
“Get out, otherwise we’ll burn you as a witch too,” they screamed back.
In her desperation she came up with a trick. She grabbed a stone and simulated a witch’s birth.
The stone smeared with mud and blood was considered by men to be evil in her. They finally let her go.
Sr Lorena took her to hospital and tended to her emotional wounds.
For Sr Lorena, the fight against these violations of human rights has become her great mission.
She has saved the lives of dozens of people and with the support of missio, has set up an aid project.

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