We just returned from a week in America. This was time well spent in building new relationships in Florida and Mississippi. The people we encountered on this trip were incredibly friendly and giving. Joining us for this trip was Alice, our intern, and Fulla, one of Andrew’s adopted daughters.
We went first to Pensacola, Florida where Andrew spoke at a conference. The people who attended these meetings were very excited about supporting our work in the Middle East and were very generous. This time was very relaxed compared to the second half of our week, so we were able to recover from our jet-lag quite easily.
We then went on to Gulf Port, Mississippi where Andrew was able to have a few different meetings, including one with a great group of young people.
This trip was able to build some great and hopefully lasting connections between the people of Gulf Port and our church in Baghdad. The support we received for our work in prayer, giving, and encouragement was tremendous.
Then we headed to Vicksburg and Jackson, Mississippi. This was a very busy portion of our trip, but again more great connections were made and we hope to be able to return to that region of the country again very soon.
Thank you everyone who came to our meetings and supported us, and thank you everyone who was praying for a successful trip.
This week has been so terrible and so painful. Everybody was really sad and frightened due to things being as bad as they had been in the past. Therefore we decided we needed to do something fun for our youth group.
We took over 50 young people to somewhere they really enjoy, the zoo and fair. They were the only ones there. They ate, drank, had ice cream and said it was amazing, wonderful, the best time they have ever had and all thanks to a donation from one of my friends!
So today we only have GOOD NEWS.
All may be terrible around us but we know that the Lord is still here and His Spirit is still with us.
With love and blessings from a hot 55C Baghdad,
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It is always good to be back in Baghdad with the people I love but every time there seems to be a new type of tragedy. On my return this time I noticed that all the boys and young men had their haircut. Nobody had any gel in his or her hair and it was obvious it was not just a change of fashion. I asked why and what I heard was beyond belief.
I was told that the terrorists had warned people that they could no longer have spiky hair or tight clothes. What is worse a large number of people have now been killed in the last few days. Not by shooting them or blowing them up but by dropping large rocks or concrete blocks on their heads. I was shown countless pictures of dear young people who had this happen to them. I am used to seeing tragedy but these pictures were more than horrific. They are far too awful to show.
Tonight I meet with our young people and I have to be able to give them something of the hope of Christ in this disaster. Please pray that I will be able to. It is so difficult when people are being killed for just being normal and young.
Original report in Al Akhbar’s English edition. WARNING some scenes in the video contained in this article may be very upsetting.
Grace and Peace,