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PORT AU PRINCE, Haiti (LifeSiteNews) — Six religious sisters and two laypeople who were kidnapped on Friday in Haiti have been released, the Archdiocese of Port-au-Prince announced Thursday.

Archbishop Max Leroy Mésidor, the president of the Haitian Bishops Conference, confirmed to the Associated Press that the group, which reportedly included a niece of one of the sisters and a bus driver, was released late Wednesday, and that everyone was “in good condition.”

Mésidor expressed gratitude to God and thanked those who had offered support in a comment to Vatican News. 

However, he declined to share whether a ransom was paid or provide other details about the crime, including the identities of the kidnappers, when asked by the Associated Press.

READ: Haitian bishop offers to take the place of six kidnapped religious sisters

Vatican News reported that on Wednesday, the Catholic Church in Haiti “organized a day of prayer, meditation, and Eucharistic Adoration for the religious sisters and all the kidnapped people.”

“This traumatic event once again tests our faith, but it remains unshakable. God always hears the cry of the poor and frees the unfortunate from all his distress,” the Archdiocese of Port-au-Prince declared in its Thursday statement. 

“We cried out to him, he made us strong in the trial and he brought our captives to freedom. He will convert hardened hearts and free Haiti from all evil so that all his children know the joy of freedom that is priceless.”  

This latest kidnapping reportedly moved religious leaders to issue a “scathing” letter slamming the Haitian government for failing to address the county’s spike in gang-related violence.

Anti-government demonstrations have also been causing unrest across the country over the past several days, with protestors calling for the resignation of Prime Minister Ariel Henry, who took power after the assassination of President Moïse in 2021. They are criticizing him for insufficiently dealing with Haiti’s safety and economic problems. 

READ: Nearly 100 Canadian churches have been vandalized or burned down since 2021

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