One of the hostages that had been released before the daring escape said that the captors “had a chance to hear the Gospel” and see “what love looked like.”
In late October, a group of 17 missionaries (including children) with Christian Aid Ministries in Haiti were kidnapped after returning from visiting an orphanage by a notorious street gang, 400 Mawozo. The leader, Wilson Joseph, demanded a $1 million ransom for each person and vowed to “put a bullet in the heads of these Americans” if he didn’t get what he wanted.
Several missionaries were released in November, and the rest made a daring late-night escape just ten days before Christmas.
A statement released by the organization and a brief interview with one of the missionaries that was released before the rest of the captives made their dangerous journey shows how the group was not deterred from spreading the Good News even as they were held hostage by a violent street gang.
According to a statement released by CAM, the missionaries were bold witnesses for their faith even as they were captured and kept in captivity. They sang hymns, recited scripture and encouraged one another as well as tried to convince their captors to repent and believe.
The missionaries say that they sensed a “nudge” from God urging them to make an escape.
Spokesperson for CAM, Weston Showalter, detailed the setting before, during and after the daring escape.
“The hostages were sensing God nudging them to attempt an escape,” he said, according to the Christian Broadcasting Network. “Over the time of their captivity, God gave various hostages a desire to attempt an escape.”
“To attempt such a thing would be dangerous. They sought God over and over again seeking direction from Him.
“After much discussion and prayer, they became solidly united that God seemed to be leading them this way. When they sensed the timing was right, they found a way to open the door that was closed and blocked, filed silently to the path that they had chosen to follow, and quickly left the place that they were held despite the fact that numerous guards were close by.
“In the distance, they could see a mountain feature that they had recognized and they had identified in the previous days. They identified this landmark before and they knew that they — this was the direction they needed to go. They also followed the sure guidance of the stars as they journeyed through the night, traveling toward safety.”
source: Western Journal
David Troyer, General Director of CAM, wrote a statement and directed a portion to the kidnappers.
“We do not know all of the challenges you face. We do believe that violence and oppression of others can never be justified. You caused our hostages and their families a lot of suffering,” he wrote. “However, Jesus taught us by word and by His own example that the power of forgiving love is stronger than the hate of violent force. Therefore, we extend forgiveness to you.”
Troyer urged the kidnappers to turn to God, “The hostages told you plainly how you can also be forgiven by God, if you repent. Our desire is that you and all who hear or read this statement may come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, our Savior, the Son of God, and the Prince of Peace.”
Amazing example of Christian witness and the power of prayer.
Psalms of War: Prayers That Literally Kick Ass is a collection, from the book of Psalms, regarding how David rolled in prayer. I bet you haven’t heard these read, prayed, or sung in church against our formidable enemies — and therein lies the Church’s problem. We’re not using the spiritual weapons God gave us to waylay the powers of darkness. It might be time to dust them off and offer ‘em up if you’re truly concerned about the state of Christ’s Church and of our nation.
Also included in this book, Psalms of War, are reproductions of the author’s original art from his Biblical Badass Series of oil paintings.
This is a great gift for the prayer warriors. Real. Raw. Relevant.