Battle aftermath

6 days before the following, I saw a vision of a bright white warrior angel descending on the SIL Ukarumpa Centre (where we live), watching towards Ukarumpa Village (which is right next to the SIL Ukarumpa Centre). The events that followed are not something I can explain, except to report a tiny part of what happened, and to say that I know that God is working to bring good out of this evil.

One good thing that happened is that in one of 72 houses that burned to the ground in the fighting, there was a stack of 3 Bibles. Not one page of them was burnt.

Another good thing that happened was that one man who was being pursued by enemies ran into his house, knelt down in prayer to repent of his sins and ask Jesus to save him. His enemies rushed in to kill him, but didn’t see him and left again.

If you want to help the homeless, the best way is to send us a gift and email us your intentions.

Here is the official statement:

Armed men entered the SIL-PNG Ukarumpa Centre gate at about 8:00 am, Wednesday morning, 12 August 2009, then left after threatening employees connected to Ukarumpa village, firing warning shots in the air and commandeering an SIL vehicle. One national employee from Ukarumpa village had his house on the SIL Centre burglarized and vandalized by the attackers when they were unable to locate him.

No SIL personnel or PNG employees were injured in either incident and the vehicle was recovered later.

At the time of the initial skirmish, the SIL-PNG Ukarumpa Centre was placed on complete lockdown until the security situation could be assessed. Residents of the SIL-PNG Ukarumpa Centre were encouraged to stay indoors and not walk outside.

By 1:00 pm the sporadic gunfire had ceased, but four individuals in Ukarumpa villageĀ  were dead, several injured, and 72 village houses had been burned to the ground.

A verbal warning from the attackers was given to SIL-PNG that any help given by SIL personnel to those who had been attacked would be seen as taking the side of their enemies and retaliation against SIL would result.

Papua New Guinean pastors in the Aiyura Valley were called upon to provide aid to the village families whom had lost their homes and belongings. Many of the women and children slept in churches overnight, while the men camped out.

The Provincial Police Commander in Goroka decided to send his mobile unit, which arrived at the SIL-PNG Ukarumpa Centre just after 5pm. They have patrolled the local village areas to restore peace since arriving.

In the aftermath, it has been determined that the reasons for the fighting and destruction were complex. Mercenaries along with villagers from the next valley had come to punish one village family line, because of the recent rape of a young girl; the recent killing of another nearby village member; and also in retaliation of village houses being burned earlier this year in a clan dispute.

Please pray with us for those who are grieving and those who are still afraid of more violence. Pray for the local churches who are reaching out to those who are now homeless. Pray for us (SIL-PNG) to have wisdom in reaching out to the village community near us.