80-year old US Pastor abducted by gang in Haiti; “I’ve come to plead”

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) - An 80-year old American citizen and pastor Jean Pierre Ferrer Michel remains in captivity after being abducted by gunmen in Haiti on October 3, nearly two weeks before 16 American missionaries and a Canadian were kidnapped together by a Haitian gang on the island, the Miami Herald (MH) reports. Both the US Embassy and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) have reportedly been contacted about Pastor Michel’s situation on account of his US citizenship.

A prominent pastor who co-founded the Jesus Center church in Port-au-Prince, Pastor Michel was kidnapped from the church parking lot at 8 am on October 3 by armed men dressed as Haiti National Police officers, MH reports. The pastor was together with two congregants at the time of the abduction: one of the congregants, a woman, was immediately released. The male congregant was taken and remains in captivity too.

Pastor Michel’s family has paid an undisclosed ransom amount, MH reports. However, aside from being told the money was not enough, the family has heard nothing more from the abductors.

Speaking to MH on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the ongoing situation, a family member said: “[The media] don’t talk about [the pastor’s abduction], like they are talking about the case of the group of 17. But this man is an American citizen, too.”

Pastor Michel’s wife Maryse has released a video in Haitian Creole pleading for her husband’s release.

“He’s without his medication. He’s an old man who is nearly 80 years old, and doesn’t have a lot of years in front of him,” Mrs. Michel said. “I’ve come to plead, and I came to ask everyone who it concerns: Release the pastor. Release my husband. Give the children back their father. Give the family back their brother because we did everything already. They are still holding them. They have to let them go. We did everything we were supposed to do.”