Monday, December 30, 2013

Attempted coup in Kinshasa, DR Congo

Dear family, friends, and blog readers -

Congolese security officers position
themselves as they secure the
street near the state television
headquarters in Kinshasa.
This morning, we were concerned to hear about the attempted coup (a second article) in Kinshasa, the capital city of the Democratic Republic of Congo and current home of Elder and Sister Gates. Although the U.S. Embassy is now reporting that the situation in Kinshasa is calmer now, the message about armed engagements this morning was quite worrisome.

We can confirm that Ed and Kriss are safely in their apartment. We are relieved to let you know that our sister Mitzi has been in contact with our parents, who briefly related some of the morning's difficulties.

For a period of time this morning, Dad as the only missionary unaccounted for as he was already at the job site for the day. He reported that he was able to hear the gunfire from his position, but that he made it back to his apartment thanks to the protective hand of God and the wonderful assistance of his students who led him home via a circuitous route through back alleys.

Today, was the day that Mom and Dad moved into their new apartment, so we're sure that Mom was probably quite nervous. They told Mitzi they have seen tanks rolling past their apartment and soldiers bunkered down in battle positions.

At this time, we ask that you pray for the people of Kinshasa, and especially for the safety of the missionaries, including Mom and Dad. In fact, we appreciate you continuing to keep Ed and Kriss in your prayers. While they have grown fairly comfortable in the Congo, the city of Kinshasa continues to appear on lists of the most dangerous cities in the world.

Regardless, we reaffirm conviction that Elder and Sister Gates are doing the work of our Lord Jesus Christ and our continued support for their missionary service. We worry for their safety, but we would never change this experience for our parents to serve alongside each other so unselfishly. Our parents love for one another has always been strong, but we've seen how their experiences during both their first and this second mission have lifted them to another level of eternal love.

To end on a happy note, we encourage you to visit our family's other blog, which details our tradition of providing service on behalf of one another during Christmas time. This year's stories of the service done by Mom (Part 1 | Part 2) and Dad are especially beautiful.

The Gates kids

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