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"And he made known to us the mystery of his will.... to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ" (Ephesians 1:9-10).
The REVEILLE EQUIPPER First Quarter 2007, Vol. 11 No. 1

GWOT Needs Spiritual Offense

 The Present World Order Frustrates Imperialistic Forms of Islam.
Muslim Empires
by Dr. Bruce Sidebotham  

Global Imperialistic Conflict Is Not the Exception But the Rule!

Winning the Global War on Terror is not just about stabilizing Iraq. It is about preserving a world order sympathetic to freedoms for conscience, expression, and women and preventing a world order that prohibits conversion from Islam, punishes negative speech about Muhammad, and treats women as legal inferiors.

The global struggle for a world under Shari'ah rather than under some other legal system like one that is Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Communist, or Secular began shortly after Muhammad's death in 632, when the tribes of Arabia emerged to conquer most of North Africa, Byzantium, and Persia. The resulting Umayyad, Abbasid, and Ottoman empires consecutively ruled most of the non-barbarian world from Damascus, Baghdad, and Istanbul respectively. Another Muslim empire, the Moguls, ruled South Asia.

Global imperialistic conflicts are not the exception but the rule. The past hundred years saw deaths of British, German, Japanese and Soviet empires. The new century is watching the rise of another imperialistic form of Islam.

Imperial Minded Muslims Overcome Resistance With Tantrums!

Combatants for the new Muslim empire are terrorists. What they lack in nationality, leadership, and organization they make up for in ideology, dedication, and objective. Every country in the world with a significant Muslim population contains cells of terrorists internationally united in their goal to establish a global empire under Shari'ah law. Based upon intercepted communication in July 2005 from Al-Zawahiri in Pakistan to Al-Zarqawi in Iraq, here are the terrorists' objectives.
  1. Expel American influence from Iraq and the Arabian Peninsula
  2. Remove secular governments from Muslim majority countries
  3. Eliminate Israel and purge Jewish and Christian influence
  4. Expand the Muslim Empire to historical significance
Outmanned and outgunned, terrorists strive to achieve these objectives by targeting their opponents' will to resist. Their brutal and mostly symbolic attacks bear on this crucial center of gravity by creating fear, robbing hope, and weakening resolve. Once the will for resistance is broken, terrorists and their allies can demand the imposition of Shari'ah law around the world. What is worse, living under Muslim law, or living in constant terror and fear?

Terrorists Have Seized Innitiative In Matters of the Spirit!

The will to resist is a non-material center of gravity. Asymmetry characterizes the GWOT because America is responding to this primarily spiritual challenge in mostly material ways. While America's conventional counterattack puts the already materially disadvantaged terrorists on a material defense, the terrorists' offense against an immaterial center of gravity gives them initiative in the realm where their enemies are most vulnerable.

According to Army Filed Manual 100-5 chapter 7, "The offense is the decisive form of war. While strategic, operational, or tactical considerations may require defending for a period of time, defeat of the enemy sooner or later requires shifting to the offense."

Defensively preserving courage, hope, and resolve against terrorist attacks targeting these immaterial vulnerabilities may become much easier for America if it seizes the spiritual initiative by attacking the terrorists at their own point of immaterial weakness.

How Can America Seize the Spiritual Innitiative?

Promoting freedom for conscience, expression, and women throughout the Muslim world can put terrorists who quake at those prospects on a spiritual defensive, but advancing these freedoms among Muslims requires some widespread core belief alterations. The biggest weapon for spiritual change is intercessory prayer.

Jesus said that with faith the size of a mustard seed we can move mountains (Mt. 17:20). John saw the "prayers of the saints" collected in heaven and offered to God on a golden altar. When the resulting fire was hurled to earth in a golden censer, it caused thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning and an earthquake (Rev. 8:3-5). Paul says our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against spiritual forces of evil (Eph. 6:12). Jesus said what we bind or loose on earth will be bound or loosed in heaven (Mt. 18:18).

Maybe It's Time to Pray for Our Enemies!

Prayer is a causative faith link between parallel physical and spiritual realities.

If faith can move mountains and "is the assurance of things hoped for and the conviction of things not seen" (Heb.11:1), then a little true insight combined with bold intercession can change the Muslim world.

I don't know whether or not it is God's will for Americans to maintain their representative democracy and prosperous way of life, but I do know that it is God's will for people everywhere to have an opportunity to hear the gospel and to have a free choice about whether to accept or reject it.

When Jesus said that what we bind and loose on earth will be bound and loosed in heaven (Mt. 18:18) he also said, "If two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my father in heaven. For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them (Mt. 18:19-20).

Soldiers Can Turn Deployments into Prayer Journeys!

More than any other Christians on the face of the earth, Christians who are deployed to Muslim lands see, taste, smell, touch, and hear all of the oppressive physical symptoms of spiritual realities. They more than any others can come together to pray with urgency and insight for specific spiritual changes.

Maybe things in the GWOT and in Iraq are going badly because we have lost the initiative. Maybe we need to try something different. Maybe it's time to pray – not just for ourselves, but also for our enemies.

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by Karen Carr[*]
African Christians Lead in PTSD Ministry
This article was first published in the July 2006 Evangelical Missions Quarterly. To subscribe on line visit .

They came from Burundi, Uganda, Democratic Republic of Congo, Chad, Nigeria, Ghana, Côte d'Ivoire, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Every one of them had a personal story of trauma they had experienced in their hometown as the result of war and ethnic conflict. Sometimes the violence was caused by rebels seeking to destabilize a country and overthrow the ruling party. Sometimes it was related to two ethnic groups at odds with each other. Some of the violence resulted from tensions between Muslims and Christians. Some had been persecuted simply because of their faith.

Some were bitter; all were broken. And yet each and every one of them had hope that there could be healing both for them and for others. They had come to the 2004 Accra Trauma Healing Workshop[**] in hopes that they would find that healing. They were all Christian leaders, some of whom were in authority over many thousands of people. They were pastors, translators, teachers and dministrators.

Here are some of the traumas they faced!

From Burundi:
"I was in a bus that was ambushed. All but four of us were injured. Over twenty people were killed."

From Uganda:
"I talked to a boy who had been kidnapped and turned into a child soldier. The children were ordered to club men and women to death. One boy was forced to be the first one to beat his mother. She was clubbed to death."

From Nigeria:
"My father was a pastor for forty-two years. We were getting ready to have a thanksgiving celebration for him because he had been retired for five years. I lost my father, sister-in-law and her six-year-old son in a raid on our village by Muslim fundamentalists just five days before the celebration."

From the Democratic Republic of the Congo:
"During the war, terrible things happened. [There was] the belief that if you raped a woman you wouldn't be killed by your enemies. Many women were raped, sometimes with the use of inanimate objects. People were buried alive."

From Chad:
"When I was a child, I was taken prisoner along with my family and others from my village. We were marched through the bush for forty-five days. The children were naked. The fathers were in chains. Those who renounced their Christian faith were set free and those who didn't were tortured. I saw one man being buried alive."

From Sierra Leone:
"It was a senseless war. Ideologies changed from day to day. Anyone who was disgruntled had a way to vent their hostilities. The atrocities rose to new levels. Two rebel soldiers wagered with each other over the gender of an unborn fetus. To find out who had won the bet, they disemboweled the woman, killing her and her unborn baby. People were told to clap when their houses were set on fire. Women were told to laugh when their children were killed. Rebel soldiers amputated people's hands and arms — they had been told to bring bags of hands back to their leaders."

Côte d'Ivoire:
"The government came to hunt out the rebels in our village. If someone was wearing a fetish around his or her neck, he or she was killed. The rebels raped our women. They would tie a man up and [they would] rape his wife and daughter in front of him."

Many tried to deal with their pain by ignoring it and concentrating on other things such as helping others and living as a Christian. But the wounds nonetheless festered.

T H E     F I R S T     W E E K

During the workshop, we started each morning with a lesson which related to participants' wounds and to how each could find healing. We looked at why God allows suffering, how emotional wounds can be healed, the process of grief and how to help people who are grieving. We also focused on how to help caregivers, children who are traumatized, women who have been raped and people living with AIDS. We looked at the process of taking our pain to the cross, forgiving those who have done us evil, dealing with ethnic conflicts and planning for times of crisis. Biblical passages were the foundation of teaching sessions that included lectures, large and small group discussions, role-playing, demonstrations, stories and case studies.

At the conclusion of each teaching session, individuals broke into separate language groups and began translating the lessons into their own language. These lessons would then be used as resources for workshop participants to use to help those in their own villages. The translations were checked by staff to ensure accuracy of translation and true understanding of the meaning of the material.

Participants also had the opportunity to ask questions of the professional counselors either in a group setting or one-on-one. During one session participants wrote songs of lament that expressed their pain. They then put these lyrics into a more traditional music composition and shared it with the group.

Each evening, a few individuals would come before the whole group and share their personal stories of trauma and pain. Although it is rare to find African men who cry publicly, some of the men began weeping as they shared their stories. For some, it was the first time they had ever talked publicly about what they had experienced. For many, it was the first time they had shared their pain without having someone either give them a pat answer or tell them to stop thinking about it. The group responded to each person by gathering around the individuals and offering encouragement and prayer.

T H E     S E C O N D     W E E K

During the second week of the seminar, each person was given an opportunity to write down the experiences and feelings that were bringing the individual the most pain. After a time of personal reflection, participants paired up and shared these specific hurts. Afterward, a special ceremony was held where each person walked to the front of the room where there was a large wooden cross. Each person then laid the paper at the foot of the cross, symbolizing the act of giving his or her pain to Christ, who is the pain-bearer. The papers were then gathered up, taken outside and burned. Many participants quietly sang as they watched their pain being given over to Christ. There was a profound sense of peace and freedom within the group.

After the ceremony, one man shared that ever since his house had been destroyed, he had been obsessed with drawing new house plans. He would draw plans over and over and then destroy them. Although his wife tried to help him stop, he felt he couldn't change. After taking his wounds to the cross, this man testified that the destruction of his house was one of the things he had written on his paper and that he genuinely felt as though he had been released from his compulsion to draw house plans. "My sickness of ‘house' has been healed," he said.

Two nights after the ceremony we moved on to identifying where we ourselves were culpable. In the midst of trauma, many people have also done things they were ashamed of or actions they knew were wrong. Many in the group began to realize that they were still holding onto hatred and bitterness toward those who had harmed them, killed their family members, burned their homes and committed countless other atrocities. Although it was hard to let go of these emotions, it was important to healing. The hatred and bitterness were fuel for ongoing pain, deepening wounds and a desire for revenge. And these emotions seem to feed the continuing cycle of violence in so many countries.

Forgiveness is a central aspect of the Christian faith. Jesus forgave his persecutors as he died on the cross and he commanded us likewise to forgive our enemies. However, this is a command we all struggle with and are loathe to follow, especially when our persecutors have not asked for forgiveness and may even continue to harm us and enjoy our pain. Nonetheless, that evening we all wrote down areas where we needed forgiveness and once again took those things to the cross. In the testimonies afterwards, many shared that they felt they had now forgiven the ones who had hurt them the most deeply. For some, the transformation from anger to joy was apparent simply by looking at their faces.

T H E     E N D     A N D     T H E     B E G I N N I N G

We ended our time with a communion service. Although we came from many Christian denominations, both Protestant and Catholic, we set our doctrinal differences aside and took communion together. We were a unified group of brothers and sisters who had heard each other's hearts and had helped to carry each other's burdens. We made plans both to meet again and to offer similar seminars in their own language.

One always wonders about the long-term impact or effectiveness of a particular seminar. However, participants shared the following words about how the seminar had changed them.

From Chad:
"When I was an adolescent, I received blows during the traditional initiation. I saw Christians who were buried alive because of their faith in Christ. Now my colleagues persecute me because of my reputation as a Christian. These two situations have traumatized me. Indeed, I tried several times to forget and forgive, but the wounds paralyze my mind when I think about these things or when I meet these people. Praise the Lord because this workshop helped me to know my illnesses and myself. This workshop helped me to bring my pain and my wounds to the cross of Jesus and to be released totally."

From Nigeria:
"This workshop on trauma has gone a long way to give me more hope and to remind me that God remains God. The need to forgive has also been impressed on my mind, and I think God has used the loss to give me a ministry of reconciliation. The seminar has changed me. My anger and sadness have nearly gone. I am going back to Nigeria happier than when I came."

From Côte d'Ivoire:
"This workshop on trauma has gone a long way to give me more hope and to remind me that God remains God. The need to forgive has also been impressed on my mind, and I think God has used the loss to give me a ministry of reconciliation. The seminar has changed me. My anger and sadness have nearly gone. I am going back to Nigeria happier than when I came."

From Liberia:
"I was able to forgive my brother that I had been angry with for a long time."

The three features which seemed to have the greatest impact on the group members were:

  1. the process of identifying wounds
  2. symbolically taking them to the cross (and thereby surrendering the hurt to a trusted source)
  3. choosing to forgive those who had caused their wounds.
We live in a world filled with violence that has been perpetuated through the generations. We need to find a way to end the cycle of retaliation and revenge. Perhaps this is a start.

T W O     Y E A R S     L A T E R

A follow up to the Accra Trauma Healing Workshop was held in January 2006. The purpose of this workshop was to assess the results of the first Trauma Healing Workshop, to review the materials and to build training skills. Almost all the original participants returned with many stories of the Trauma Healing Workshops they had led in their hometowns and in their mother tongues. A total of fifty-seven seminars were held with 2,200 participants. An additional 157 people were trained to facilitate the workshop. By God's grace, the work will continue and the ministry of healing and reconciliation will spread throughout Africa.


* Karen Carr is a clinical psychologist in Accra, Ghana and works as the clinical director of the Mobile Member Care Team-West Africa, a multidisciplinary, inter-mission organization that provides workshops, crisis response and counseling for missionaries living in West Africa. See for more about mobile member care.

* *The materials from the 2005 revised edition of Healing the Wounds of Trauma: How the Church Can Help were used as the primary teaching tool in this seminar.
Wycliffe Bible Translators plans to hold training on conducting these seminars with this material at their Dallas, TX facility 28 Jan - 1 Feb 08.

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World Evangelical Alliance - Religious Liberty News & Analysis
German Seminary Investigates Malatya Martyrs in Turkey

The following report from Martin Bucer Seminary (MBS) Bonn, Germany, was compiled by Titus Vogt, MBS Dean of International Programs. The English translation was done by Thomas K. Johnson, Ph.D., MBS Professor of Apologetics and Ethics.

Turkey Martyrs

Some months, ago the murderers gained the trust of their intended victims. To do this, the assassins indicated an interest in the Christian faith and said they wanted more information about the Bible and its contents. What deception could be more powerful to Bible publishers who were themselves adult converts from Islam to Christianity? Under this guise, they met repeatedly with their future victims.

On the morning of 18 April, two of the murderers came to the office of Zirve Publishing House in Malatya, which is an extension of a Protestant publisher based in Istanbul, with distribution offices in various Turkish cities. Among other things, they discussed the Christian faith with Necati Aydin, as they had done frequently over the previous months. On this particular morning, in addition to Tilmann Geske, the bookkeeper, Emin M., was also in the office. Everything seemed to be completely normal. In the course of the morning, Emin left the office, not suspecting that he would never see Aydin and Geske alive again.

Shortly thereafter the three other assassins arrived and tied up the first two victims, while they threatened them with pistols. Two days before, the assassins had been taken into custody because of wielding weapons in public, but they had been set free because they were only carrying warning pistols.

As soon as the victims were tied up, the murderers began torturing them with knives. A short time later Ugur Yuksel came into the office. He was immediately grabbed by the murderers and tied up. Shortly after that Gokhan H., also a Christian, stopped by the Zirve office, but he could not open the door, because it was locked from inside and the lock was jammed. Golkhan tried to call the office and finally reached Ugur on the telephone. Ugur said that the planned meeting was not going to be held in the Zirve office. Instead it would be held in a particular hotel. Golkhan had the impression that something was wrong, so he called a friend in the city. This friend advised him to call the police, which Gokham did.

When the police arrived a few minutes later, the victims were still alive. The police demanded that the criminals open the door, at which they slit the throats of the victims. When the police forced the door and stormed the office, they found Aydin and Geske already dead. Yuksel was still alive and was rushed to a local hospital. In spite of emergency surgery and 51 units of blood, he died of his numerous knife wounds.

The autopsy reports lead to the following picture: The bodies had scores of knife wounds in the pelvis area, lower body, anus, abdomen, and back.Their fingertips had been sliced repeatedly; and they had massive slashes on their necks which severed the windpipe and esophagus.

The distinctively ritual manner of the murder, particularly the slicing of fingertips, is convincing observers of the religious motivation of the assassins. The perpetrators seem to have been following the instructions of Sura 8:12, from the Koran. There it says (in the Rudi Paret German translation of the Koran), "I will strike terror into the hearts of unbelievers. Flay their necks (with a sword) and strike every finger." The last half of the sentence is translated in even more striking terms in some versions. In the Rassoul and Zaidan translation it says, "chop off every finger;" the Azhar and Ahmadeyya translation says, "chop off every finger tip."

Three of the attackers were arrested directly in the office, where the attack was occurring; two tried to escape by climbing down an external downspout pipe. One more attacker was arrested in the second floor of the building, one floor below the crime scene. The final assassin, who is described by the others as the leader of the group, fell to the street from a significant height when the downspout pipe broke off from the wall of the building. He was brought to a hospital and spent some days in a coma. When he awoke he was questioned by police.

In the course of the next few days, some other suspects were taken into custody, including the son of a mayor (AKP party) from a town near to Malatya.


At a press conference a day after the attack, Pastor Ihsan Ozbek (from Ankara), President of the Association of Protestant Churches in Turkey, said "Yesterday Turkey was buried in the darkness of the Middle East." He compared the common, country-wide, widely hawked conspiracy theories which accuse Christians of conspiring against Muslims with the medieval witch hunts in Europe. These conspiracy theories contain a deep phobia of foreign missionaries.

In responding to an inquiry of why Geske, a foreign missionary, was in Malatya, Ozbek said this is already an unconscionable question, since in a truly democratic state one may not ask "Why are you or they in Malatya?" The pastor used very pointed words to portray the background of the murders that led the Turkish media to entitle a report on the news conference, "A gruesome brutality, but no surprise." Ozbek said he was convinced that, "it is not the last martyrdom, though we hope from the bottom of our hearts that it could be the last martyrdom."

Necati Aydin and Ugur Yuksel are the first known Muslim converts to Christianity to be martyred since the founding of the Turkish Republic in 1923. Ugur Yuksel was buried according to Islamic/Alevitic rituals at the orders of his family, which vehemently denies his Christian faith. The German victim was buried on 20 April in the Armenian cemetery in Malatya, following the wishes of his widow. This occurred after a bitter fight with the local authorities who unconditionally wanted to prevent Geske's burial in their city. Because of pressure applied by the German government, his burial was only delayed by three hours, from 2:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. Eye-witnesses say that about 100 mourners from across Turkey came to his funeral. Necati Aydin, who was pastor of the local Protestant church in addition to his work in the Zirve Publishing House, was laid to rest on Saturday, 21 April, in his home town of Izmir. The roughly 500 mourners who attended his funeral were very deeply moved.


An enormous media storm in Turkey has followed these events. Many Turks sent letters to the newspapers to express their deep disgust. The widow, Susanne Geske, earned tremendous admiration for her words in a TV interview the day after the massacre. She said she forgave the murderers of her husband, the way Christ forgave his murderers, citing Jesus' prayer, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing." This is the reason why she wants to stay in Malatya with her children. Many letters to the newspapers are saying that now they really want to read the New Testament or even to describe themselves as Christians, since they no longer want to have anything to do with Islam.

This brutal attack is not really the act of a group of deluded youth, since the media has been provoking antagonism against Christians for a long time. One of the most harmless media lies is that Christian are paying Muslims to convert to Christianity. One of the more disturbing is that Christians offer prostitutes to Muslims, in order to entice them to become Christians. Two events related to the funeral of Necati Aydin serve to illustrate the deep ambivalence of Turkish society toward Christians. When his coffin was to be flown from Malatya to Izmir, it would not fit into the x-ray machine in airport security. The Turkish newspapers reported that the airport security staff simply broke the handles off the coffin, a sign of their feelings. And during his funeral, one of the police officers standing guard over the funeral called one of the mourners "a son of a whore."

Last Sunday (22 April 2007) the services of many Protestant churches took place under heavy police guard. In one small congregation in one of the parts of Istanbul, two top local police officials came to inquire about their security needs and to urgently suggest the installation of an alarm system and security cameras. And because of the continuing massive threats, many pastors are now accompanied by security guards. This causes great concern for believers in Turkey. In spite of truly positive developments in the realm of freedom of religion in recent years, they now see their freedom of religion as deeply threatened.


Note: Based on testimony from some family and friends who briefly and incompletely viewed the bodies and out of concern for both local and international reaction, a 30 April e-mail from the pastor of the church in Diyarbakir, Turkey, alleges exaggeration and foul motives in some graphic descriptions that have circulated in Turkish media and on the Internet.


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African Church Leader Calls for Interdependence
by Dr. Sidebotham

If the only speaker I had gotten to hear at Intervarsity's triannual missions conference this past December was Oscar Muriu from Kenya, the whole week long experience in the Saint Louis stadium where the Rams play would have been worth it. Here is a summary from his Thursday night presentation to a rapt audience of around 25,000.

Oscar at Urbana

Did you know that Christians in Africa grew from nine million in 1900 to over 360 million today? Did you know that of the seventy million members in the worldwide Anglican Episcopal communion more live in Nigeria alone than in all of North America and Europe? Did you know that Kenya alone has more believers in Jesus Christ as personal savior than all the countries of Western Europe combined? Did you know that the largest congregations in London, Kiev, and Zurich are led by pastors from Africa?

In the last 100 years, the world's religious landscape has dramatically changed. The center of gravity of Christianity has moved to the southern hemisphere and definitions of what it means to be Christian will be increasingly defined from the perspective of the non-Western world. "The mission industry of the last 200 years was hugely successful. . . . We who come from Africa will always be eternally grateful to your forefathers who sent out their very best, their own sons and daughters, and resourced them to bring the gospel to us."

Oxford University Press' World Christian Encyclopedia reveals that Africa has the fastest church growth in the world, adding 23,000 converts each day. Conversely, total North American and European church membership declines by 6000 every day. "If western models of church are not working in the west and the church is in decline, should the church of the two thirds world copy the models of the west or embrace western theology?"

Christianity in Africa looks considerably different. It reads the Bible though the glasses of extremes in famine, poverty, disease, and oppression long absent from the North American and European context. Theology is being rewritten from an African perspective. "African interpreters do not ask the same questions that Western interpreters do."

So what about missionaries? Are they still needed in Africa? The answer from 1 Corinthians 12:14-27 is a resounding "yes!"

14Now the body is not made up of one part but of many.
15If the European church should say, ‘because I am not African, I do not belong to the body,' it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body.
16And if the African church should say, ‘Because I am not American I do not belong to the body,' it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body.
17If the whole body were European, where would the sense of joy be? If the whole body were African, where would the sense of order be? . . .
21The American church cannot say to the African church, ‘I don't need you!' And the African church cannot say to the European church, ‘I don't need you!' . . .
27Now you are the body of Christ and each one of you is part of it.

The body of Christ analogy provides a paradigm of partnership. Africans think of partnership like a marriage where two parties are in a relationship, but they don't really accomplish any specific task. Americans think of partnership like a business contract which has a definite beginning and ends when the goal is accomplished. But the partnership present in a body is more intricate than these. It is a kind of interdependence with reciprocity. When the daughter church is fully mature, it should never be fully independent of its parent church.

"The African church knows it desperately needs the American church, but how does a church in North America need the African church? . . . What in the world could the church in Africa give to the Church in North America? This is not the body of Christ."

Missionary agencies must retool for the new landscape. Short term teams should be received as well as sent. Very likely, the non-Western church will always be dependent upon the Western church for the blessings the Lord is channeling through it, but no part of the body ever receives and never gives back.

American children are rewarded in school for problem solving and for speaking up in class. "Two qualities that mark North Americans is your ability to solve problems and your assertiveness. You are quick to speak your mind." But the blessing can be a curse. "When you come to Africa, you want to fix Africa. Well, you can't fix Africa! You must learn to come as listeners and as learners. . . . Come to build bridges of healthy interdependence. Come as people who build reciprocity. Come as people who approach the cultures of the world with respect and with humility. . . . This century must be the century of genuine partnerships."

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Book Reviewed by Dr. Bruce Sidebotham:
Out of Africa: Spiritual Healing for PTSD

Healing Trauma       In the post Tsunami and post 9-11 world, mental health professionals are offering many insights and resources into the symptoms and treatment of post traumatic stress. Many Vietnam war veterans are just now getting help for traumatic stress related emotional and psychological conditions after decades of suffering in confusion and misunderstanding.
      Sadly, most of the recent help has come from secular medical professionals rather than from the Christian Church, which has been generally slow to recognize and address mental illness in a realm of suffering and evil that is beyond the reach of simple formulas and the comfort zone of most parishioners.
      Unfortunately, because it has to be sterilized of faith, secular therapy usually avoids complex theological themes like suffering, forgiveness, reconciliation, and redemption and therefore fails to meet deep spiritual needs.
      Enter the African Church, a diverse blend of newly emerged congregations with keen awareness of spiritual realities and blatant exposure to some of the modern era's worst human tragedies. Africans, not Americans, are modeling some of the best Scripture based care for PTSD in the world today.
      Healing the Wounds of Trauma: How the Church Can Help, authored by four Wycliffe missionaries, began life in the Ngbaka community in the Northwest of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
      It has been translated into French, Indonesian and several African languages.
      Although published in Nairobi, it is available on, and it is the best literary work I have found on explicitly Christian ministry to people suffering from PTSD.
      This work by Margaret Hill, Harriet Hill, Richard Baggé and Pat Miersma is a 120 page seminar textbook
      Each of eleven lessons starts with a story, integrates the Scriptures, and includes questions for group discussion.
      Lessons one, two, three and nine are core materials to be taught at all seminars. Others are used as needed.


ISBN: 9966-21-792-4 (This may be needed for an Amazon search.)
Copyright: Wycliffe International
      7500 Camp Wisdom Rd., Dallas, TX 75236
      phone: (972) 708-7575
Published by: Paulines Publications Africa,
      PO Box 49026, Nairobi 00100, Kenya

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CDrom Resource:
Help for PTSD

Campus Crusade for Christ's
Military Ministry

DVD and Resources for
Helping Family and Friends
Help Emotionally Wounded Warriors

For more information go to . . .
or call . . .

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The Reveille Equipper
Volume 11, Number 2 - Second Quarter 2007