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Priest attacked in the Managua cathedral with sulfuric acid

On Wednesday, December 5, in the afternoon, The vicar of Managua, Father Mario Guevara Cerda, 59, suffered a sulfuric acid attack when a 24-year-old woman threw the acid on the priest’s face and body while he was in the cathedral hearing confessions.

Elis Leonidovna Gonn was arrested after attacking the priest. Photo: Oscar Sánchez.

A report of the incident sent said the rector of the cathedral took the priest immediately to hospital for treatment. Despite serious burns the priest’s conditions appears stable.

The woman, identified as Elis Leonidovna Gonn, originally from Russia, was detained by people in the cathedral as she tried to escape, later was arrested by the police.

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According to the police report and immigration, Gonn had entered Nicaragua in September from Honduras with an Italian passport.

Born in Russia, but he left her country last year for political reasons and sexual orientation; in Italy she obtained the passport of that country upon receiving refugee status, which, according to several portals of the Italian foreign service, is legally impossible because it takes five years of legal stay in Italy for a refugee to be naturalized.

By Wednesday afternoon, after the attack on the priest, police reported that Gonn has a Russian passport. On Thursday, official information stated that she fled Russia, traveled to Italy with her two-year-old daughter in April 2017.

It is not known why Gonn left Europe, only that she and her daughter left Mexico on August 22 for Guatemala. Two days later they traveled to El Salvador, then to Honduras. On September 7, they entered Nicaragua by land, according to official information.

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The statement from the archdiocese asks for prayers for the health and full recovery of Father Mario who suffers from diabetes, and asks the faithful to unite in prayer“ for all our priests during this Novena of the feast of the Immaculate Conception”.

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