Last week Wednesday, as Caroline was walking home from school, she was attacked by some men. I will spare you the details, but Caroline was left emotionally and physically damaged. After everything else they did, they then tried to drown her so that she wouldn't be able to tell on them. Luckily, Caroline lived and found someone to help her. As you can assume, Richard and Dorothy were furious and of course concerned for Caroline.
As soon as we found out, Erica went to find them and help drive Caroline and her family to the hospital. A medical report was filed and tests were done to make sure that she had not ended up with HIV. Thursday, Richard and a few men went down to the elementary school to talk to the Headmaster (Principal). They wanted to inform him of what happened and talk to him about what could be done to prevent future problems (it turns out that Caroline is the 6th girl in a row to have this happen to them just outside the school property). Unfortunately, the Headmaster got defensive and called some of his relatives. They came and chased Richard and the others off, beating them up and leaving two of them with serious injuries.
Now, the culture here is very much an eye for an eye type of culture. The police (although a police report was filed) will do nothing about this. So culturally, what would normally happen is that Richard's relatives would all go and beat up/kill some of the people related to the Headmaster. This would result in a tribal war and who knows how many would die. So immediately a whole group of men headed down the road towards the school to go start a fight. But they had to pass by the church that Richard pastors and Richard was there waiting for them. He got them to stop and he calmed them down and told them he didn't want to start a fight. He told me later that he just kept thinking of the church members, the ministry he has worked hard to develop, and the new Christians that have just recently gotten saved. He said that he knew that it would all be for nothing if he went and started trying to get revenge. And so no fight started.
However, Richard is still in a very difficult position. What would you do if that happened to your 8 year old daughter and the police did nothing? Richard is still trying to get the Headmaster to talk to him about what can be done.
Please be in prayer for Richard and his family right now. Richard told me this morning that Caroline wakes up screaming at night. And she is afraid to go near any stream or river. Also pray for the Mt. Hagen Church that Richard pastors. They had a special prayer yesterday in church because they feel that Satan is fighting against them because of all the people that are getting saved recently. and continue to pray for Erica and I as we try to help in these kinds of situations.