By Haley Knudsen
09/23/2022 Washington, D.C. (International Christian Concern) – Survivors of gruesome terrorist attacks have a long journey ahead of them after the dust settles from the bombs and loved ones are laid to rest. For the All Saints Church bombing in Pakistan that claimed the lives of 127 and injured 250 church-goers one Sunday morning on September 23, 2013, many children were left to navigate the world as an orphan.
International Christian Concern (ICC) set up a schooling program to make sure that these children’s future wasn’t taken from them, even if their loved ones were.
Now, almost 10 years later, our staff has walked with these children as they have grown up, discovered their passions, and developed big dreams.
Some of these children who we met are ready to head to college and other vocational trainings.
The roots of persecution are a prison of desperate poverty and a lack of political power stemming from generational educational deficits, job discrimination, and lack of access to capital. Education and vocational training have the power to break cycles of persecution.
ICC’s Generation Transformation was birthed out of the desire to attack the root cause of persecution.
We select one community and infuse it with blessings, by funding and aiding the entrepreneurs, taking the best and the brightest persecuted Christian children and giving them a top notch education in private schools, and supporting vocational training to turn them into carpenters, plumbers, and electricians.
The following testimonies speak to the incredible talent and faith of these young Christians whose lives would look much different without education.
We hope you are moved by their resilience, grit, and love of Christ.
Shayan, Grade 9
“I lost my papa and mama when the [All Saints] Church was attacked in September 2013. I had no idea what happened on that day as I was just about four years old. I have gone through very difficult times. Every moment I miss my parents. However, I am thankful to my guardians and ICC for supporting and taking care of me.”
Shayan has been a beneficiary of ICC’s Schooling Project since April 2014, set up to support orphans and victims of the All Saints terrorist attack. English and Math are his favorite subjects.
“In the future, I want to be a doctor. A part of my professional career will be dedicated for the uplift of the needy and deserving people,” Shayan told ICC. “If ICC wasn’t there to support me, I would have never gone to school because I lost my parents, and my relatives were financially not so good.”
Sehar, Grade 6
Sehar prominently proclaims her Christianity and is proud of her faith. She sets great examples among her Muslim classmates with her excellent performance. She lost her mother in the All Saints Church bombing.
“I did not spend much time with my mother, but I have heard she was a great woman and very strong in her faith,” Sehar told ICC. “I am the only child of my parents; therefore, I have the advantage of being loved so much. However, I face a lot of challenges. I miss my mother at every step of life. May her soul rest in Jesus.”
Sehar is a lover of art and music and wants to become a doctor. She believes that God will open doors for her to make her dreams come true and Christian community proud.
Tania, Grade 9
Tania is a brilliant student and often gets performance awards. She loves reading, English, mathematics, and the study of biology in school.
Her father died in the bombing of All Saints Church. “I miss my father a lot on special occasions and on Father’s Day. I want to be as genius and a humble person as my father was.”
ICC has been supporting Tania’s education since April 2014. She wants to study to become a lawyer so she can become a voice for the oppressed Christian community.
“ICC has done a lot in shaping my life and bringing me up as an educated Christian girl. I appreciate and am highly grateful to ICC,” Tania added.
Mehak, Grade 6
Mehak is a shining star. She regularly receives awards and certificates for her excellent performances in art, public speaking, handwriting, and painting.
“I love reading and speaking English. It’s my favorite subject,” Mehak told ICC. “I want to become the best teacher of English literature in the town. I believe Christians can only develop their lifestyle if they concentrate on the studies.”
“From my childhood I have seen ICC team continuously visiting us at our home,” Mehak told ICC. “We have experienced a very painful time with our mother after the church was attacked. My mother did a lot for us. We are happy ICC has continued to do a great job for us.”
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