Monday, December 4, 2023

Nicaraguan priest with family ties to Charlotte captured, jailed in the country


CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) – Tensions overseas are having a direct impact on an area family.

Nicaraguan police detained a well-known bishop, Monsignor Rolando-Alvarez, and other Roman Catholic priests because of their criticism of Nicaragua’s president.

One of those priests is Father Ramiro Tijerino, the son of a member of the St. Matthew Catholic Church in Ballantyne.

The church hosted a special mass service for the peaceful release of those priests Wednesday night.

The family is very worried especially because they have not seen or heard from Tijerino since he was taken on Aug. 4. On Wednesday, dozens and dozens of people came to the church to pray for the priest’s family.

Tijerino’s sister said her brother is one of several priests and bishops taken by President Daniel Ortega. Articles about this matter say the clergy was under house arrest in a Nicaraguan city, but she says her brother was transferred to prison shortly after.

Her parents went down to Nicaragua to try to get help but they are feeling very hopeless. That is why she says she hopes to find hope at St. Matthew Catholic Church with the power of prayer.

Wednesday’s special mass was held specifically to pray for this family and the safe return of Tijerino and all of the captured priests and bishops.

”My family and I … I feel blessing for this community. For this church, our church, I feel grateful,” Mayra Tijerino said.

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