TO POLICE HEADQUARTERS
of our American visitors came back last week to stay in Bamako for
another ten days, and do more filming. You have
to be very wise and cautious to film here, as you can get into a
lot of trouble, which happened once, but my team was able to sort
afternoon, they had street children come to their
house to interview them about life on the streets; none of my team
was aware or present. One of the neighbors was unhappy when he was
asked to turn down the volume of his music for the recording, and
called the police telling them what he'd seen.
flags went up at the police headquarters when they heard that white
people are filming street children; they thought that pornographic
materials were being produced. The Americans called us
over, since they could not communicate with the policemen.
told them why they were filming and who we are, and the police let
go of the Americans to look more closely at us. We were summoned
to present ourselves at the police headquarters downtown
right away. I sent out the prayer request email, picked
up our registration papers, and off we went.
prayers were answered, as we could see the hand of God in
what proceeded. A Malian Christian lawyer should
have come to our house tonight to help us with all the legal work
still to get done, and so I informed him of the situation. He said
that his nephew (a Christian) is a police official, and gave me
his number. Abel then came straight to the police
station to help us. He's also a representative of the Malian
Association of Churches & Ministries that we are a part
of, which makes a big difference for the government.
years ago, a police official I knew who loved us,
and had even come to English class once, and had been very helpful
in several ways, left to go to Darfur in Sudan on a one-year assignment.
I had actually helped him with the English application and test
he had to take. I had not heard from him since, and only assumed
he was back.
Baba was home and bored, and so he thought he'd
go to the police headquarters to see his friends there. So he was
there when we got there, and we had a wonderful, joyful reunion.
I was truly glad to see him, as he is a sweet man who would follow
Jesus if the repercussions weren't as fierce as they are.
asked what's going on, and also joined us before the "commissaire",
a high police offical who is constantly in the media and very well
known in Mali. I had to show our papers and was questioned
about our activities involving children. I was as cautious
as possible giving answers while being truthful. I told them we're
aware of needing more papers for a children's center, and when asked
when it would start, I told them we already have children with us.
commissaire still seemed pretty concerned. Then Abel and Baba spoke
up for us, which was very helpful.
charges of child pornography are serious, the chief of police
is already informed, and we have to come in to see him
first thing in the morning on Monday. Both Abel and Baba will also
be there to help us.
Please pray for Holy Spirit to speak through me, and for
favor. Pray that this will work out for our best, and that the worst
case of our children's center being closed won't happen. Pray also
for the paper work that still needs to be done for everything to
be in order, that this whole situation would even speed that up.
We've declared a day of prayer and fasting in our house tomorrow
summons are for 9 am on Monday, which is 11
am in Austria, 5 am Eastern time in the
US and midnight on the West Coast.
HAD TO LEAVE
week ago one of my workers had to move out, and yesterday Daouda
was caught stealing (again) and had to leave the
house immediately. We'd just found out that he's actually already
18 years old. He was with us for one month before, but could not
stop stealing, so he had to leave. He then went to prison after
having come back to steal our car radio, and when he came back out,
we gave him another chance and took him in again. He said he was
done stealing and wanted to follow Jesus. After 7 months in our
house, he was caught stealing money from the Americans.
very night we saw him at the bus station, when we were giving out
food to street children, and he said he got a free ride to a town
in the south of Mali where he has family. However, since then he's
been roaming around the house where the Americans are staying, without
doubt trying to steal some of their valuables.
always sad to have to send someone away that you've
poured your life into. Tonight, after we came home from police headquarters,
I realized afresh how much I love my children,
and I hugged and held each one of them. I told them I would not
let them take them away from me, but would fight for them. We held
hands in a circle, praying for this situation, before they went
to bed. They'd been praying the whole 4 hours we were gone, and
know what's at stake.
you for standing with us and praying for us. May God be glorified
through this situation!
when they take you [to court] and put you under arrest, do not be
anxious beforehand about what you are to say nor [even] meditate
about it; but say whatever is given you in that hour and at the
moment, for it is not you who will be speaking, but the Holy Spirit.