A missionary who received an OBE last week has been shot in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), according to reports.
Maud Kells, 75, from Co Tyrone was hit twice in the shoulder by bandits at her home in Mulita in the north east of the country, according to the BBC.
She is said to be in a stable condition in hospital.
Ms Kells has served in the African country since 1968, working initially as a missionary nurse and has helped train Congolese nurses in five hospitals and 30 health centres. She has been working as a midwife in the country for almost 50 years.
Ms Kells, who reportedly serves with the WEC International mission agency, also conducts bible school teaching, speaks at church services, and supervises construction projects.
She spends half of the year in the Congo and the other half at home in Cookstown.
Ulster Unionist Assembly Member for Mid-Ulster, Sandra Overend, said: “Only a few days ago we heard the news that Maud is to be awarded a great honour from Her Majesty the Queen and now today, this terrible news that she has been shot doing her work in the Congo, is shocking.
“I am sure that I share this sadness with so many people from Cookstown and across Mid-Ulster. Having spoken to her sister tonight, I understand that Maud’s condition is now stable.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Maud as she recovers. I am sure that there will be numerous well-wishers thinking of Maud tonight and in the days ahead.
“Those that know Maud will hope that her usual determination will provide her with strength to recover from this terrible incident.”
My thoughts and prayers are with Maud Kells tonight as she recovers from being shot twice in the shoulder. http://t.co/AkzKnMJ7iF— Ian McCrea (@ianmccrea10) January 6, 2015
Medical Care in D.R. Congo, By Maud Kells