ACN Success Story:
Help for attack victims of a church in Pakistan
In March 2015 an appalling suicide attack on St John‘s Church in Youhanabad on Christians killed 20 people and wounded another 80 people.
The families are all poor, many have lost their main breadwinner or now have to pay for expensive medical treatment. Your help has enabled the purchase of medicines, food and other necessities easing some of the most immediate basic needs.
If this particular attack killed many, the toll of victims could have been higher had it not been for the courageous actions of one man, 20-year-old Akash Bashir, who had volunteered for sentry duty outside the church. He spotted the suicide bomber who was wearing an explosive belt underneath his clothing before he had the chance to enter the church, and managed to wrestle him to the ground. The attacker detonated his suicide belt, killing himself and young Akash instantly, but without entering the church. Young Akash undoubtedly saved numerous lives – there were 600 people inside the church. His family was also among those we were able to help, thanks to the generosity of our benefactors. His parish priest, Father Francis Gulzar says, “Words cannot describe the sorrow we feel at the loss of this hero and martyr. Thousands of people came to his funeral, to pay their last respects to him and to all who died in this attack.”
Archbishop Sebastian Francis Shaw of Lahore has expressed his gratitude for this aid and paid tribute to our work “ACN is not only an aid agency, but a sort of movement that encourages people to be merciful, to trust and to pray. ACN supports us in our difficulties with prayers and good words; it helps the victims who are in need of mercy, it helps us in many ways with works of mercy and it thereby also helps us to help others to be merciful.”
$29,000 generously donated by our benefactors, has gone to help the victims of the attack on St John‘s Church