I was honored to be the pianist for the recently completed ” Summit For Persecuted Christians.” Following the summit I tried a few times to write down some reflections but had difficulty. Saying I was blessed, challenged, motivated and encouraged are just a few of the words that come to mind. Ravi Zacharias summed up my feelings when he said he was humbled and did not feel worthy to address this group.
Hearing first hand accounts of unimaginable suffering really impacted me.
Franklin Graham wrote this on his face book page.
>>>At this World Summit, I’ve had the privilege of meeting and talking with many who have experienced the horrors of persecution firsthand. Today I met a woman from Iran whose father was hanged to death because of his faith. I spent time with two men whose brothers were among the Coptic Christians marched out on the beach in Libya and viciously beheaded by ISIS for refusing to deny Christ—then the video published for all the world to see. I met a dear pastor from Uzbekistan who was arrested and imprisoned for 4 years for proclaiming the Gospel. A man from Sudan who was horribly beaten and tortured for preaching the Gospel. Someone from Mexico who was repeatedly beaten, their church burned, and the people from the church made to leave at gunpoint and walk over broken glass, barefoot as they left the city. The stories go on and on. We may think that in the United States we are far removed from such persecution, but we are not. We have a responsibility to pray for those enduring suffering because they carry the name of Christ. The Bible says, “Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering” <<<
Franklin summed up the Summit very well. After hearing all the stories, I made a promise to not only pray for our brothers and sisters being persecuted worldwide, but to join the chorus and let my voice be heard. Will you join us too?
Here are a few videos from the Summit:
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On a sad note. Many of you might remember my friend Neville York steel drum player extraordinaire. Neville was one of my best friends from College. His mother died a few days ago and a few hours after her funeral, Neville died from a massive heart attack. I was able to fly to St Maarten to play for his funeral. It was a sad but joyous occasion. The pain is great and there were many tears, but we do not grieve like those with no hope. I know we will see Neville again, he was just summoned early to lead the heavenly steel drum orchestra. Please keep his wife Veronica and family in your prayers. At his funeral his brothers decided to give him a caribbean send off. Here is a video clip of the parade to the cemetery.