I write this as I prepare to leave tonight (Friday) from Logan Airport’s Terminal E – the International Terminal – on a Swiss flight to Istanbul by way of Zurich. My heart is full and anxious to be in a place where the Call to Prayer is my alarm clock. This week I will be writing in Istanbul but not blogging a lot – wanting to be fully present in the midst of bazaars, the Call to Prayer, Turkish tile, and most of all – best friends and relatives (in this case they are one and the same!)
I have a wonderful series for Readers on Re-Entry from Joy Salmon, a fellow TCK/MK from Pakistan, as well as a couple of other fun things scheduled ahead so be sure to tune in to those pieces.
And I look forward to sharing Istanbul with you through writing and pictures!
Thank you for reading, for responding, for your wise comments.
On to the week wrap-up.
On Thirsty India: I’ve heard about water wars in the future, but haven’t paid much attention. This article called Indian States Fight Over River Usage talks about a fight already going on. This quote made me sit down:
“India will need 1.5 trillion cubic meters (396 trillion gallons) of water per year by 2030, about double its existing supply and more than a fifth of the projected global demand, according to a 2010 report from the International Finance Corp. and the consulting firm McKinsey & Co. Yet as the population swells, India’s water supply per person is dropping.”
On AIDS in Africa: The words in the article boldly proclaim a message – The story you’ve heard on AIDS in Africa is wrong! This article pulls out facts, statistics, and narrative that you’ve probably not heard. It’s premise is that the narrative is wrong because it’s the church that is central to helping to control the AIDS epidemic in Africa. I read it. I loved it. This is the Church in action – I’m proud to be a part of the worldwide Church as I read this.
“There is no ambiguity in the data: Religion has been central to curbing the spread of HIV in local communities across sub-Saharan Africa. Measurable changes and improvements were detectable before PEPFAR and Gates dollars started rolling in. This leaves the puzzle of why this story has remained untold for so long while atypical stories of religious leaders pushing abstinence and burning condoms continue to circulate widely.”
And the last paragraph:
“In the standard narrative, ignorant or aimless Africans passively await guidance and assistance from plucky Westerners who ride in to help—often to intense applause. (Think of Nick Kristof’s regular columns praising earnest American volunteers.) Like Wainaina, we read such stories cautiously and suspiciously. Beyond being mildly offensive, these narratives simply don’t fit the Africa we know—a place, like any other, in which people converse about and respond to AIDS, famine, war, and plain-old daily hardships in contested and complex ways. On the world’s most religious continent, people use religious ideas, language, and organizations to address problems, big and small. This is the source of religion’s positive contribution to the recent improvements in Africa’s AIDS situation. Such stories need to be told.”
The article in its entirety is called Good News on AIDS in Africa. I urge you to read it and be encouraged!
On Pakistan: While we in America evangelize through Facebook status updates and symbols, Christians in Pakistan use a predawn procession through the streets on Easter. This is an incredible picture of living out faith in a place increasingly hostile to the Christian minority. It’s been a pleasure to connect online with the writer of this blog – Titus Presler. We are finding we have a great deal in common. May you be encouraged as you read this amazing article called “Predawn Easter Procession of 2500 Christians in Peshawar – ‘This is our Evangelism’”
“So there you have it: a Christian community in an adverse environment that is nevertheless robust, ecumenically involved, and witnessing to the resurrection of Jesus on Easter morning.”~ Titus Presler
On the Book I’m Traveling With: Finding Calcutta by Mary Poplin. This book is affecting my heart. It’s based on this quote and so I leave you with this:
Have a great weekend and thank you!