With picture of Father John Mark Cheitnum (© Aid to the Church in Need)

Catholic leaders in Nigeria have announced the “gruesome murder” of Father Mark John Cheitnum – the fourth priest to be killed this year alone.

Father Cheitnum was abducted on 15th July and, in a statement, the Diocese of Kafanchan, in Middle Belt, said that on 19th July his corpse was found “already decomposing”.

The statement, signed by diocesan chancellor Father Emmanuel Okolo, a copy of which was received by Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), revealed that Father Cheitnum had been “brutally murdered”. 

Meanwhile, in Benue State, central Nigeria, the diocese sent a report to ACN calling for help and slamming government inaction in the face of relentless attacks by Islamist Fulani herdsmen. 

At least 68 Christians have been killed – with many more abducted or displaced – in the last two months in Benue State. About 80 percent of displaced people from Benue are in the capital, Makurdi, and the Church is providing emergency and spiritual support.

Nigeria has long been a priority country for ACN, and in 2021 ACN financed 105 projects there, including emergency aid, trauma counselling, and a fence at a seminary where staff and students are at risk of abduction. With your continued support, we can help these people who are suffering. Please click here to read the full story.

Paulos Al Wakeel stands in front of anti-Christian graffiti at a church in Bartella. (© ACN)
Iraq Appeal
Iraq BLOG: 15 death threats but undaunted 
John Pontifex writes:
I met Paulos in the Nineveh town of Bartella, he told me: “When the extremists took over, they began calling me day and night, demanding I pay them. Fifteen times they called me and threatened to kill me.” 
For the sake of his family, Paulos eventually took sanctuary in Baghdad but, with the militants defeated, Paulos is back doing what he loves best. He describes how as a civil engineer he is working with ACN to restore churches and other structures desecrated by the extremists. 
As we speak, we pass Daesh (ISIS) graffiti: ‘The Government of ISIS will stay here.’ He responds: “But we say to ISIS: It is us who will stay here, not ISIS. We must work so that Christians can stay. It is our country.” 
Download the full report here and find out how you can help. 
Bishop Robert Barron is the Keynote speaker at this exciting one-day Conference

ACN Events 

ONE-DAY CONFERENCE: 'Sharing the Church's Story' 
Hosted by: Catholic Voices and Word on Fire Institute
Date: Saturday, 17th September 2022. 
Time: 10:00 am to 6:00 pm 
Location: Friends House, 173-177 Euston Road, London, NW1 2BJ 
Keynote Speaker: Bishop Robert Barron – founder of Word on Fire Catholic Ministries.
ACN (UK) is delighted to be an official sponsor at this exciting national conference. ACN’s John Pontifex will speak at a panel session ‘Christian persecution: Breaking the Silence’.
Whether you are a volunteer, parent, catechist, clergy, religious, or just want a boost for your faith life, then this conference is for YOU. With a capacity of 1,000, demand for tickets has been strong, so act now to secure your place. 
For ticket prices and to book click here.
Other dates for your diary:  
  • #RedWednesdayWednesday 23rd November 2022
  • Annual Carol Service: 7 pm on Monday 12th December 2022 at Farm Street parish, Mayfair 
Details in the coming weeks.
ACN Shop
Neither Bomb Nor Bullet
In the warzone that Nigeria has become, Anglican Archbishop Ben Kwashi has survived three assassination attempts.  A brutal assault on his wife, Gloria, drove him to his knees – to forgive and find the strength to press on. In this biography you can read about how his faith grows ever more vibrant. And the challenge of his message – to live for the Gospel even in the face of terror – has never been so timely. Please click here to order!
Please go to for Icons and rosaries just in from Lviv, Ukraine. Let us pray for peace in Ukraine.
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