Despite there are many things to comment on Andrew Brunson’s 3rd session of trial which held on July 18th in Izmir Aliağa Şakran Prison, the mainstream media’ s focus is preventing to see the truth and its magazine approach is discrediting the fact. The media is making the current issue only what it wishes to. When we look at what is seen from the photograph taken at any moment in the trial, we understand immediately that accusations are based usually on the unsubstantiated statements of false witnesses.
If we look briefly at this trial, we understand that Andrew is detained since October 7, 2016, in the absence of any concrete evidence. He is separated from his wife and his children. However, it is clear that Andrew Brunson is officially a hostage in the bargain, “give the pastor and take the pastor.”
He has no relation with FETÖ neither with PKK nor any other organization. None of the people who testify about Andrew are directly blaming him saying, “Andrew Brunson did this, he said that”. They are all saying “I heard it from someone; such things are being talked.” It is also true that all of those who testify about him have been in that church for a while. They all had in various demands and could not obtain what they expected. This is why they are now blaming him.
For 22 months, the power that keeps Andrew Brunson in jail away from his life and his family could act differently if a crime was really present. However, none of the crimes attributed to him can seem logical to a sober-minded people. He is detained without any evidence, for suspicion on him to escape. Because he needs to be detained in order to be used as a bargaining subject.
Although there is no evidence, when you follow the trial, you find that the secret witnesses hide behind the nicknames such as “fire, prayer etc…” and try to invent evidences to support the accusations they claim through what they heard from 2nd or 3rd person. This is a tragicomic situation.
This is not a legal but political case.
As Andrew Brunson himself expressed in his defense that the court did not even accept any witnesses to defend Andrew. Most of the requests of Andrew’s lawyer such as research, information, documents, witness are being refused from the court and this makes you lose confidence in justice.
We see in the court that Andrew Brunson is very calm, courteous and attentive, defending himself and behaving honestly during the trial.
However, he is not understood. His self-defense struggle is intentionally misunderstood. For example, when he is asked why he is in Turkey, he clearly read “Matthew 28: 16-20 – Go, be my witnesses around the world!” and he announced the Good News by telling his services of 25 years. Although many listeners do not care about his words, we know that while Jesus was crucified, many people were ridiculing Jesus and the captain said that He was “the Son of God!” and through this some people in the court will remember Andrew’s words. Today, in that courtroom, the Gospel of courage which raised in the voice of Andrew Brunson, found its place in many hearts, and the seeds he threw would surely be sprouted and fruitful.
He can be only appreciated that in this difficult moment, instead of trying to save himself, he used a considerable part of his time to spread the Word and to convey the love of God to mankind.
Yes, I do not know who has fully understood his words when he said “I have forgiven those who have been injustice to me, hurt me, distract me and separated me from my children”, but at least some people will think about them.
When Andrew Brunson’s defense minutes will be ready, his precious withness will be more clearly revealed.
I stopped myself to stand up and applaud when Andrew said: “Of course, suffering for the sake of Christ is also a privilege. Happily, I am suffering these anguishes for the sake of His name, and I am happy to say that aspersions are being casted upon me, and I am happy to say that I am jailed. I am glad that I share his sorrows.”
We have not come to this world to be understood by everyone. We stand in this world to witness like the Christ’s disciples and to continue to announce the Gospel. This means also suffering, insults, slander, violence and discreditation. But I am not ashamed of my Gospel. I think that those who think they are embarrassing us will understand soon that they are struggling in vain. I know we’re superior to the winners even if we look like defeated.
As Andrew Brunson said, it is privilege and joy, to encounter what we do not deserve for the sake of Christ. It is a powerful cause to exult with joy, for our reward in heaven will be great.