This week, there were no prison visits. The families and detainess are boycotting after the arrest of the lawyers. It’s funny how we are protesting by depriving ourselves of something. Despite the boycott, we haven’t stopped thinking of them. Down, in Alabama, my sister has added my father-in-law’s name to the prayer list of her back-in-the-woods Baptist church and these people are conscientiously praying every Sunday for his release. This, apparently, pleases him to no end. I told him in a letter about the prayer list, and he quickly shared it with his cellmates who were all thrilled.
I am always moved by what happens on a people level. Here is my sister, doing her best to help out a new member of the family. What does she know of Kurdish politics down in Alabama? And there is my father-in-law, touched and comforted by the thought. But on a larger social level so many boundaries are being crossed and ignored. A woman from the Deep South—a home to evangelist Christians who villify Muslims on the nightly news (Quran burnings, a history of racism) and an Alevi Muslim man, part of the Kurdish left who villify America as Imperialist and believe all religion to be inherently foolish at best, and dangerous in general.
My sister writes, ‘We prayed again for them Wednesday night and for Delal and her family. I pray for you and her to be safe every day. I try to give my worries to God, but sometimes it’s hard. I know you have a heart as big as mine and want to help everyone. Please pray every night that God will work in their lives to help free them. I know from experience He works things out for us, not always on our time, but He does, and not always what we want. Know I love you and Delal and can’t wait to be able to spend time with my sister in law.’
These Alabama Baptists praying every weekend and the Kurdish leftists warmed by the thought as they languish in prison touches me. If there is any hope in the world, then it lies in tiny moments like these that go unnoticed in the headlines.
My topic recently has been Hrant Dink—himself a leftist atheist married to Rakel, a very devout Christian. Here is part 3. Keep in mind that as they brothers discuss the Armenian school and church, they are doing so when saying one was Armenian was a dangerous thing to do.