Monday, May 18, 2009

Gracia Burnham honored in Washington D.C.

During my years in Wichita I had the blessing of serving as Gracia Burnham's pastor. Gracia was recently in Washington D.C. at the invitation of the Justice Department.
In May 2001, Mrs. Burnham and her husband, Martin, missionaries for more than 15 years with New Tribes Mission in the Philippines, were awakened by armed gunmen affiliated with the terrorist organization Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG). The Burnhams were among 20 hostages seized that morning and were held captive for more than a year. Throughout their terrifying ordeal, they exhibited remarkable strength and courage. On June 7, 2002, members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines found the terrorists’ encampment, and in the subsequent firefight, Mr. Burnham was killed, and Mrs. Burnham was shot in the leg; but she survived and was rescued. Since that time, she has dedicated herself to pursuing justice against the terrorists who held them captive.

In a recent ceremony in Washington, D.C., Attorney General Eric Holder presented Gracia Burnham with a Special Courage Award, recounting her efforts to protect victims’ rights. The ceremony was a prelude to the nation’s observance of National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, April 26­–May 2, 2009; nine other individuals and programs were also recognized for their service to crime victims.
Read the entire post HERE.

I would encourage you to read Gracia's moving, heartbreaking, and affirming memoir "In the Presence of My Enemies."


toothdoc said...

One of the most treasured items I possess is a "prayer card" from MetroEast from last summer. These were the cards that were signed by the prayer group that had prayed for you on that Wednesday. This was during the time that I had a very scary medical diagnosis pending. My card was signed by Gracia. I remember seeing it and thinking, how awesome it was that someone like her was praying for someone like me. Especially when we had spent so much time praying for them during their captivity. She is a remarkable woman of faith.

Todd Pruitt said...