A website of the Free Methodist Church has reported that an American woman working as a Christian missionary in Nigeria was kidnapped just days ago.
Bishop David Kendall released the following statement Monday, Feb. 23, urging prayer for Free Methodist missionary Phyllis Sortor: “Early this morning we received a report that Rev. Phyllis Sortor, our missionary in Nigeria, was abducted from the Hope Academy compound in Emiworo, Kogi State, Nigeria by several persons. The U.S. Embassy has been notified, and the State Department and the FBI are working with local authorities to find and rescue her. We are calling on the U.S. church to join together in prayer.”
Nigeria is one of the world’s worst country’s for kidnapping, a major criminal enterprise that makes millions of dollars a year.
According to Reuters, criminal gangs have kidnapped scores of expatriates in southern and central Nigeria over the years. Central Kogi state has also had low level activity by Islamist militants linked to insurgent group Boko Haram, security sources say.
A U.S. State Department official said authorities had heard the reports but could not make further comments in the interest of privacy.
Visit the Free Methodist Church website for updates.