Eight Colombian police and military members who were kidnapped by the FARC attended Pope Benedict XVI’s general audience Wednesday at the Vatican in Rome.
“It will be poignant for the soldiers and family members accompanying them. They have come to to thank the Pope for his constant prayer that enabled them to endure the ordeal of being kidnapped before they regained freedom,” said Colombia’s Ambassador to the Holy See. “We hope this gesture will also mark an important guideline for reconciliation, because when you have suffered a lot, you also grow in love and, consequently, in the capacity to forgive.”
The eight kidnap victims include one of Colombia’s top former police commanders General Luis Ernesto Mendieta, who was in FARC captivity for 12 years and now works for the Spanish Embassy in Madrid.