Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The tears of War

When I took the position of the Director of Nursing at St Mary's in Lafayette, IN, I noticed a dutiful, and quiet soul that took care of the residents in a compassionate and respectful way. She was a nun, still bound to St. Mary's on her visa to America, even though the Sisters had sold the facility and it was no longer Catholic.  She was very hard working and would pick up extra shifts and while I spent my three years there, Sr. Andrea completed her RN and became one of my nurses.

Sr. Andrea was from Nigeria. She had a love and devotion to her country and her loved ones that she had left there. She came to America to be educated in her vocation of nursing so that she could take those skills back to Nigeria where they were so urgently needed. Sr. Andrea told me that she was a midwife in Nigeria and she delivered many dead babies due to the lack of prenatal and proper medical care or facilities. She was grieved and knew that there had to be a better way. She was torn always about her obligations to her education and the urgency to return home to Nigeria to help these women and children.

Sr. Andrea was able to return home over the Christmas holidays last year. I was very concerned because of the danger and atrocities towards women, especially Christian women. Sr. Andrea's two toned blue habit would reveal her as a very clear target. Sr. Andrea desired to see her mother and the rest of her family that she had not seen in several years now. She did go and she did return safely and I let out a sigh of relief that God had heard our prayers.

Since then the atrocities of the Boko Haram and the Ansura, the two terrorist groups that have declared Jihad and bloodshed against Westerners and any Nigerians that in there opinion are not following Islamic law, including the Nigerian government, have alarmingly increased. In July of 2010 the Boko Haram, which means, "Western education is forbidden", joined in solidarity with Al-Qa'ida.

The latest attack of the mis-motivated Islamic militants was against civilian villagers in Izge.  Witnesses describe the horrific scene saying that the Boko Haram arrived on Sunday morning, riding in on trucks and motorcycles. They gathered the men of the village in the midst of the village and proceeded to shoot and hack the men to death. They then proceeded door to door, killing any villagers they found, setting off explosives and burning down houses.  The estimated dead ranges from 60 - 100. It is an estimation because the villagers had to flee and leave the bodies in the street to save their lives. The governor of this ill-fated region, Kashim Shettima, says the Boko Haram is more heavily armed then the Nigerian soldiers. Shettima says given the current state of affairs,  the Boko Haram will "overrun communities and butcher innocent souls" despite the army presence. 

What evil possesses a group to believe that they are providing a necessary cleansing of the "infidels"? I cannot for the life of me understand how one can shed the blood of innocent men, women and children in the pursuit of Jihad. I know from the history books that this is an old war that goes back to the foundation of man when two nations and two manners of people wrestled in the womb of Rebekah Ge 25:23. Regardless, I cannot understand the apathy of bloodshed. Do we remain barbaric and primal, that our disagreements are settled with blood? G_d forbid. Yet that is what happens, daily, not just in Nigeria but around the world. 

War..... "the blood of the soldiers is the elixir of freedom" was a slogan that I read on a military site while visiting my son. War.... I cannot tell you the grief of spirit I felt as I saw my son deploy to the battlefields of this war that  continues from the day of the crusaders. War... the same demonic force that caused the arch angel Michael to wrestle with the prince of the kingdom of Persia thus delaying Daniel's prayer. 

Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words. 13But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia. Da 10:12 & 13

Is that what is going on? Are the angels both of light and of dark warring in the heavens? That is the only explanation that I can perceive for the delay in the deliverance of my brother and sister Christians that are enduring these atrocities by the hand of blood-thirsty warmongers in the name of their god. Or is the delay of deliverance due to the apathy of American Christians? How many have assembled in a solemn fast demanding the deliverance of our brothers and sisters? How many turn the page because they can't handle the information? How many stand silent? 

The American church needs to wake up. This blood-thirsty evil has already come upon us. 911 is not forgotten. Apathy and, even worse, embracing the enemy and allowing them unprecedented access to the Holy pulpit of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  According to Sun Tzu, The Art of War, “The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” 

Join me in prayer, join me in publishing the hard truths of today. Join me in a fast for our brothers and sisters, however the Lord instructs you, do something! Do not be a part of the apathy. 

      And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; ...I Co12:26

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Sexual Assualts against women

The international community has expressed outrage as the punishment of a rape victim, yes I said the punishment of a rape victim, was increased from 90 lashes to 200 lashes by the all superior court of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The court imposed the Sharia law unto the "Qatif girl", a Shiite Muslim in a predominantly Sunni Muslim country. 

The incident dates back to 2006 when the then 19 year old girl, who was to be engaged, was found in a car with a young man as she was attempting to retrieve a picture of herself from him. She was guilty of being in public without the escort of a male family member. She and the young man were sexually assaulted by seven men. The male victim was also sentenced to 90 lashes. The sexual perpetrators were also given various sentences the greatest being 5 years in prison and 1,000 lashes.

The "Qatif girl's" sentence was increased to 2,000 lashes due to her lawyer, Abdul Rahman, known as a human right's activist, taking this case public.  This has raised the concern of various human rights organization's globally.

In Pakistan, the chaos of suicide bombings, devastating earthquakes and car bombings has set the stage for opportunistic sexual predators to unleash attacks on  girls as young as four and five years old.

The recent outcry in Pakistan started with a brutal rape of a 5 year old girl that had been abducted from a poor section of Lahore. She was brutally raped multiple times and her body was then thrown outside the Sir Ganga Ram hospital. She was in critical condition and had two surgeries as her life hung in the balances. The last report stated she was stable but still in intensive care.

Her family, devastated and outraged, took to the streets in protest. Social media also picked up the cause. This came as a surprise to Zohra Yousef, chairperson of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan who stated, “It is disturbing, but the rape of minors is not uncommon,”.  Sexual assault of women and minors in particular is widespread with an estimated 450 cases of minors being raped in Punjab Province in 2012. It is believed that this number is quite low as the victims do not report due to the stigma attached to the incident. These women are then in danger of honor killings by their family or the local tribal jirgas.

The justice system for rape victims is almost non-existent in Pakistan with only 3-4% of convictions reported. Until 2006 the burden of proof was on the rape victim who was to bring 4 male witnesses of the incident forward to prove her case. This is the a requirement of Islamic law. In 2006 these cases were removed from the Islamic courts and moved to the criminal courts. The police are poorly trained and the jirga, local councils and tribal elders will often pick up where the courts left off. In 2012 it is reported some 900 women were killed in honor killings in Pakistan.

Sept 12th a 5-year old girl was brutally raped multiple times, beaten and left for dead in Lahore.
Sept 14th an 8-year old girl was brutally raped is in critical condition in Kanjwani area of Faisalabad
Sept 15th a first year student brutally raped by 3 men from  Toba Tek Singh left in a graveyard
Sept 25th 13-14 year old school girl reported missing - her body found Sep 26th she was sodomized
Sept 26th 14 & 15 year old girls bodies were recovered in Gujranwala, they had been raped and shot 
Sept 26th a 4-year old girl was raped in a field in Gujranwala
Toba Tek Singh in critical condition
Kanjwani area of Faisalabad
Kanjwani area of Faisalabad
Kanjwani area of Faisalabad
Sept 27th a 7-year old girl was raped while walking home from tuition in Kotri, Jamshoro
Sept 28th a 6-year old girl was raped in the  Orangi Town area of Karachi

These assaults go on and on and seem never to quit. One of the doctors was quoted as examining one of the girls and saying she will be healed in two days times. Anyone who has ever suffered from a sexual assault knows that it takes a lifetime of healing. What is the best defense that we can provide for these women in these oppressive countries? Lift our Voice! We have the freedom to speak on behalf of these children. We have access to all the international presses. Share this information, Speak against the Unspeakable. Help bring light to the darkness that these children are subjected to.

We lift these little sisters up to you Father and pray that their bodies, minds and souls be touched with the healing touch that can only come from our loving heavenly Father.  We pray that you anoint them with the Balm of Gilead and bring peace to their spirits. We pray that you show us what we can do to bring light to this darkness. We pray that you will give us the avenues to bring justice to injustice and to speak against the unspeakable crimes that are happening to these innocent children. In Jesus Name Amen.