Thursday, April 19, 2007

Pictures & Videos of Pakistan -- April 5-15, 2007

I wrote three reports about my time in Pakistan below. Here are some pictures (click for full size) and videos to compliment them.

North Pakistan. I landed in Lahore but, after preaching in a local church, was whisked off to North Pakistan for three days.

The gentleman in the middle runs a Christian school right smack in the middle of where the Pakistan earthquake zone. This is the only Christian school in the area, and God chose to protect all of the children from harm when the earthquake struck. Given the thousands who died, hundreds of them children, this was a powerful testimony.



Spent a lot of time on the road. Crazy driving and almost no seatbelts.



Preaching by translation in Abbottabad.



Quite the road...



We almost crashed into these goats.



The house-church where eight were saved.



The congregation. ... Christ said "I will build my church." He's doing it. Also, watch this house-church worship the Lord in this Quicktime video clip.



Afterwards. The woman to my left was one of the one who professed faith.



--

After North Pakistan it was on to Lahore. I spent most of this time with Mike Wakely (and three others) looking at Starfish schools. Here is a 53-second YouTube video of the time. It opens with a presentation from the children. Then there is footage of the children singing in presentation to the guest (me again!) in the classrooms, and ends with a clip of unschooled brick kiln children. Maybe some of these children will be in a Starfish school soon.



Miracle Brick Kiln School: giving brick kiln children hope through Christ-centered education.



Two of the cutest kids on earth. See them sing in the video. :)



The schedule.



Happy students.



A young student in prayer.



This is a picture of a very proud father and his child - a girl who did so well in school that she won this prize. The thing is that this little girl is adopted - as are her four sisters. By adopting these girls, this man and his wife (by no means rich themselves) saved these girls from desperate situations. They intend to adopt five more girls - maybe more. It is one of the happiest homes I have ever seen.



At a small school for handicapped children, this little boy who can't walk is overjoyed with our visit. Like the others, he has rose petals to shower on us in welcome.



This is a tragic story. (Read my update below for more background.) Because children work on the brick kilns in order for the families to make enough to survive (at the extortionate rates the brick kiln owners pay the people for their work), this little girl was engulfed in flames when something went wrong. She wouldn't even have gone to school (where I took this picture) if it hadn't been for Starfish. .. Safety is not a priority at the brick kiln, and the brick kiln owners who run the show more often than not let sick and injured children die. .. Someone like you could bring Christ to 1,000 children like this. Challenging.



Bonded labourers making bricks. After the bricks are hand-made in little moulds, they are brought here, stacked high, and fired - turning them from brown to red.



A brick kiln child who has probably never entered a classroom.



The brick kiln manager lives in the house in the middle of this photograph. I saw him lounging on a charpai (bed). There is a nice white car in his driveway. His is a house of luxury by local standards, with fruit trees in the garden. Nothing wrong with any of this, except that he (and much more significantly the brick kiln owner, who does not live around here) are wealthy through the extortion of their brick kiln bonded-labour slaves.



Nothing special here... until you discover that those bricks--there are several hundred - many of them stacked--have been ruined by the rain. Something happened--maybe people got sick--where the family that made these bricks left them. With not even a tree to protect these half-finished bricks (let alone for shade) in this sun-burnt plain (not to mention temperatures that reach 50 degree Celsius), the hours of back-breaking work that went into these were wasted. And the brick kiln owner doesn't care; he only pays for finished bricks.



On a happier note, one of the things I got to do in Lahore was visit the home our family had lived in 16 years ago (now renovated and much nicer!). After taking this picture, the host (to whom I was a complete stranger) invited me in for a full tour, a cold Coke, and a bowl of ice cream. :)



Finally, here is a picture of the Jala*l family. (Read about them in "Worlds Converge" below.) What an absolutely wonderful way to spend my last day in Pakistan - fellowshipping with the Jal*als, and Matt & Ruth Cook in Karachi. Unfortunately I didn't get a picture of Matt & Ruth, but visit Matt's blog at matthewcook.blogspot.com (and read about our time together from his perspective), pray for the J*alals, praise God for Starfish, consider giving to all three; and press on in Jesus' name.

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ar TORONTO, CANADA | 2019+

APRIL


MAY

30 Thu | TEB poss. staying over
31 Fri 10am online MI b. mtg

JUNE

12 Wed 12noon flight to Houston, TX
12-16 Wed-Sun time in Houston
15 Sat Prayer Journey - Houston
16 Sun flight to Arkansas
16-21 Sun-Fri downtime in Arkansas
21 Fri flight to Toronto
23 Sun eve flight to Manila
25 special event w/ ~J
25-30 Sun-Sun Lausanne Marketplace Forum - Manila

JULY
1 Mon Canada Day - likely lunch w/ J/BA+
2 Tue (1) 6:30pm dinner (Pstr Nono), (2) 7:30pm patch prayer mtg
4 Thu 8am - med. appt: stress echo
5 Fri-Sun church-plant camping trip - Balsom Lake
8 Mon (1) 8:30am VT prayer mtg, (2) 12:30pm detailing
27 Sat (1) 1pm wedding (NA+) - Etobicoke, (2) 5:30pm wedding (C/C) - Kleinburg, ON

AUGUST onwards
Aug 12-16: Kids Kapers camp
Sep 13: poss. 10am MI b. mtg
Oct 18 (or 25): poss. CCWM board mtg
(Oct 4-6: BAM conf - Silicon Valley, USA)
(Oct 22-25: poss. conf - Edmonton)
Nov 1-2: poss. Nepal prayer b'fast w/ TH
Nov 22: poss. 10am MI b. mtg
Dec: poss. Australia; Indonesia
Apr 20-22: poss. First Chair retreat
2020: May 8: 10am CCWM board mtg