American nun found safe 5 months after her abduction in Africa

Marianite Sister Suellen Tennyson has been found safe five months after she was captured at a convent in Burkina Faso. (WVUE/Clarion Herald)
Published: Aug. 31, 2022 at 12:08 PM EDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE/Gray News) - A Louisiana nun who was kidnapped in west Africa has been found alive after nearly five months of captivity.

WVUE reported 83-year-old Marianite Sister Suellen Tennyson had been found safe Monday after she was abducted from the convent of her educational and medical mission in Burkina Faso.

The Archdiocese newspaper the Clarion Herald reported Marianite Sister Ann Lacour had talked to Tennyson over the phone Tuesday.

“She is safe,” Lacour said. “She is on American soil, but not in America. She is safe.”

The congregation reported they currently don’t know Tennyson’s exact location but said she is safe and they are awaiting her return to the U.S.

According to the Clarion Herald, Tennyson was kidnapped in the middle of the night, blindfolded and barefoot, on April 5 by a group of about 10 armed men.

Members of the congregation reported the residents of the convent were asleep when the men burst into the convent, ransacked the living quarters and kidnapped her.

“They destroyed almost everything in the house, shot holes in the new truck and tried to burn it. The house itself is OK, but its contents are ruined,” Lacour said in an e-bulletin April 6.

Two other Marianite sisters and two young women who were also living at the convent were not kidnapped during the attack.

The Clarion Herald reported the two other sisters were relocated after the kidnapping.

Since her abduction, there had been no information on Tennyson’s condition or whereabouts until she was found.

She had been stationed as a missionary in Burkina Faso since 2014.

It’s unclear how she located or freed from her captors.

The Clarion Herald says no other details would be released for now for privacy reasons.