28 January 2012

Terror in the Hills - a true story

Police and medics carry Kristine
"...for such a time as this."
This quote from the biblical story of Esther is an important reminder of the part we all play in the history of mankind.  The story of Esther is also a reminder of those among us who seek to destroy people groups, take lives, and deny the right of existence to many. 'Terrorism' is no longer an unusual word in our daily lives, and victims of terror continue to increase among us.

Your People My People is committed to bringing into the light, some of the stories of such victims, to increase awareness of the severity of such acts, realising the terrible impact for those who survive and for the families and friends of those who do not survive.  This is one of those stories:

Kristine Luken
In December 2010, Kay Wilson and Kristine Luken were hiking in the hills near Jerusalem with Kay's small dog, Peanut, when they were approached by two men. Within half an hour the two men had bound and stabbed both women repeatedly, murdering Kristine and leaving Kay for dead, stabbed Peanut, and wondered off a little way to have a leisurely cigarette. The men were members of a terrorist cell loyal to Hamas and their motivation was political - killing these ladies was an act of honour because they believed them to be Jewish.

Kay, a Jewish immigrant from the UK and Israeli tour guide, knew her only chance to survive was to play dead, even though she could hear her friend being stabbed just a few feet away from her. She wished Kristine would do the same but sadly this was not the case.  Once her attackers had moved away, she stumbled 1.2km (3/4 mile) bare-foot, hands bound behind her back, with broken ribs, a punctured lung, and bleeding badly from 12 stab wounds.  She made it to a picnic site in the National Park where she began to receive assistance from those who found her.  No-one, including the doctors, can understand how she was able to make it so far over rough terrain with those kind of injuries.  Kay, as was Kristine, is a strong believer in Jesus. After revisiting the site of the attack some weeks later with officials, she knows it was a miracle.

20 January 2012

Your Voice Can...

Your Voice can transform society! 
Your voice can make a difference! 
You voice is important!

Friday 27th January is the International Holocaust Memorial Day - 
The UK theme for 2012 is: Speak Up Speak Out!
'In a world where humans are free to do right and to do wrong there will always be evil actions. If the Holocaust is to teach us anything, it must be the realisation that one has to speak out against evil. Even a limited, uncertain, anguished fight against darkness is better than surrendering to the evils of the past and the present day.' (Rabbi Albert Friedlander)


15 January 2012

1 in 2 Can't Pay Bills

A third of Israel's elderly are at risk
29% (almost a third) of the Israeli population are in danger of living in poverty, according to a report by Israel's Bureau of Statistics.

The report also comments on the fact that only 53% of the adult population are able to cover their household expenses each month. (food, electricity, telephone etc.)

- Children and the elderly are reported as being most at risk.  

- 40% of children in Israel are at risk of living in poverty and the rate of young people missing meals for economic reasons rose by 7% in 4 years.

- A third of Israel’s elderly are at risk.

- 17% of the 52% of adults needing medical attention in Israel, did not seek the medical treatment they needed because of financial difficulty. 

Some of these ‘at risk’ families and elderly are directed by social services to Agape Distribution Centre. Managed by Israeli believer, Avi Mizrachi and a dedicated staff, Agape seeks to help the poor and needy in the Tel Aviv area with food and clothing.  A warm welcome and a friendly smile greet the 70 or so families that receive help each month from this vital ministry.

04 January 2012

No one left to speak out for me...

First they came for the Communists
And I did not speak out 
Because I was not a Communist
Then they came for the Socialists
And I did not speak out 
Because I was not a Socialist
Then they came for the trade unionists
And I did not speak out 
Because I was not a trade unionist
Then they came for the Jews
And I did not speak out 
Because I was not a Jew
Then they came for me
And there was no one left
To speak out for me

This well-known poem is written by German Pastor Martin Niemoller about the inactivity of German intellectuals following the Nazi rise to power and the annihilation of their chosen targets, group after group. Its a clear reminder of the danger of not speaking out against injustice. On January 27th, many nations around the world will commemorate International Holocaust Memorial Day. On this date in 1945, Auschwitz Concentration Camp was liberated and the awful truth about the goings on inside this and similar camps was revealed. 

In Britian, the 2012 national commemoration focuses on the theme 'Speak Up, Speak Out'. History needs to be remembered in order to learn from the mistakes of the past and in so doing, work towards a better future. As we remember the atrocities that took place, the words 'never again' should motivate us to examine how we can make our own world a better place.