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Is dangerous "volunteer" work worth the risk?

2

Posts

  • SerpentSerpent Sometimes Vancouver, BC, sometimes Brisbane, QLDRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    VoodooV wrote: »
    I really hope you didn't just try to equate the Taliban with the entire Muslim faith. Maybe you should ask yourself if it bothers you?

    What the hell? The taliban probably don't have any missionaries, since they are more of a political/military body that follow a religion as opposed to a religious movement. I was more correcting you than anything.

    If you'd prefer, does it bother you that there was any missionary work in louisiana after the flood? I guess those people shouldn't have helped out at all.

    edit: Personally I think it's GREAT that their are muslim missionaries. That means more people helping out.

    Serpent on
  • VoodooVVoodooV Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    I'm not the one who brought up the Taliban, and my quotes around missionaries should have been a sufficient enough hint that I don't actually believe the Taliban have missionaries.

    But fine, whatever, doesn't really change my point. A local community of devout Christians in need would, generally, not react well to missionaries of any religion other than their own.
    I guess those people shouldn't have helped out at all.

    Thank you for proving my point about the guilt angle earlier

    VoodooV on
  • SerpentSerpent Sometimes Vancouver, BC, sometimes Brisbane, QLDRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    VoodooV wrote: »
    I'm not the one who brought up the Taliban, and my quotes around missionaries should have been a sufficient enough hint that I don't actually believe the Taliban have missionaries.

    But fine, whatever, doesn't really change my point. A local community of devout Christians in need would, generally, not react well to missionaries of any religion other than their own.
    I guess those people shouldn't have helped out at all.

    Thank you for proving my point about the guilt angle earlier

    The fuck?

    You're saying you don't like missionaries -- I take that to mean you don't want missionaries to do missionary work, which would mean a bunch of people who help out won't.

    Did I interpret wrong? Where is the guilt angle in that?

    Maybe you should just rephrase yourself. You don't seem to be very good at getting out your point, what with the taliban missionaries and all. I do remember you saying this though:
    they work the guilt angle a bit too much. Gee, we came over to your shit hole country and helped out, the least you could do is consider Jesus Christ as your personal savior.

    Which, of course, is nothing like what I just said to you... but now you're saying I work the guilt angle? I guess I've been interjecting this whole thread with Jesus and the Holy Spirit and you need to be saved and stuff.

    oh wait
    I haven't

    Serpent on
  • Nova_CNova_C I have the need The need for speedRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    You know I asked for some kind of cite for that claim that they were singing hymns in front of a mosque. The ONLY place I've seen that claim is in the OP. So I'm going to assume it's false. All the information I've been able to find out about this says that they were on a humanitarian mission funded by a church. Until someone shows me something that says otherwise other than vague innuendo and prejudice, of course.

    And Voodoo seems the type that would blame a woman in short skirt and halter top with being raped. She knew the dangers, flaunted them, and got what she was asking for, right?

    Do you have any idea the sheer amount of humanitarian work people of various faiths do around the world? Let me give you a hint: It's a LOT. I know several missionaries and I've never seen or heard them witness to anyone who didn't first ask. What would you like, Voodoo? For them to say no? That God is only for them and no one else should know him? Riiiiiight.

    Nova_C on
  • HooraydiationHooraydiation Registered User
    edited July 2007
    And what did their humanitarian work entail? What qualified them to be there? Sorry, but if you're armed with little more than a can-do attitude, you're liable to do more harm than good, especially to yourself.

    That's not to say they brought this upon themselves, of course. Culpability is all over the place, with the majority of it lying on the kidnappers and whoever told these missionaries that going to Afghanistan would be a good idea in the first place.



    And I don't see why it wouldn't be better if churches sponsored volunteer work over missions. It'd certainly be more appealing to the large number of people who don't subscribe to any given faith or simply belong to a faith that's too poorly represented in their community to stage their own good works. It would also dispel the apparently false notion that the purpose of missions is to grandstand for your God.

    Hooraydiation on
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  • SerpentSerpent Sometimes Vancouver, BC, sometimes Brisbane, QLDRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    And I don't see why it wouldn't be better if churches sponsored volunteer work over missions. It'd certainly be more appealing to the large number of people who don't subscribe to any given faith or simply belong to a faith that's too poorly represented in their community to stage their own good works. It would also dispel the apparently false notion that the purpose of missions is to grandstand for your God.

    Uh, that's often exactly what a mission is. Hell, I have a non-christian buddy who's probably going on a mission trip with me next year.

    Serpent on
  • HooraydiationHooraydiation Registered User
    edited July 2007
    Serpent wrote: »
    And I don't see why it wouldn't be better if churches sponsored volunteer work over missions. It'd certainly be more appealing to the large number of people who don't subscribe to any given faith or simply belong to a faith that's too poorly represented in their community to stage their own good works. It would also dispel the apparently false notion that the purpose of missions is to grandstand for your God.

    Uh, that's often exactly what a mission is. Hell, I have a non-christian buddy who's probably going on a mission trip with me next year.

    And how many other non-Christian buddies are coming? How about non-Christians who aren't in some way connected to the church, in this case through a member of the parish?

    Was any attempt made to attract people with no connection to the church, and was any attempt made to let the public know that there'd be no proselytizing and that personal beliefs would not be an issue? Did your church invite members of other local religious communities to participate?

    And how confident are you that your church represents the norm?

    Hooraydiation on
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  • SerpentSerpent Sometimes Vancouver, BC, sometimes Brisbane, QLDRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Serpent wrote: »
    And I don't see why it wouldn't be better if churches sponsored volunteer work over missions. It'd certainly be more appealing to the large number of people who don't subscribe to any given faith or simply belong to a faith that's too poorly represented in their community to stage their own good works. It would also dispel the apparently false notion that the purpose of missions is to grandstand for your God.

    Uh, that's often exactly what a mission is. Hell, I have a non-christian buddy who's probably going on a mission trip with me next year.

    And how many other non-Christian buddies are coming? How about non-Christians who aren't in some way connected to the church, in this case through a member of the parish?

    Was any attempt made to attract people with no connection to the church, and was any attempt made to let the public know that there'd be no proselytizing and that personal beliefs would not be an issue? Did your church invite members of other local religious communities to participate?

    And how confident are you that your church represents the norm?

    There's only so much room on these trips. I think it's pretty understandable that members of the church, the members funding the trip, get priority to go on it. My work recently participated with habitat for humanity -- only people from my work were involved. I think it's also understandable that slots went to applicants from my place of work before we looked elsewhere.

    I am very aware that there are some churches out there which have practices of which I do not approve. I'm not about to go and tell you what the norm is though -- but I will say that it's folly to make broad assumptions about mission trips.

    Serpent on
  • HooraydiationHooraydiation Registered User
    edited July 2007
    Serpent wrote: »
    There's only so much room on these trips. I think it's pretty understandable that members of the church, the members funding the trip, get priority to go on it. My work recently participated with habitat for humanity -- only people from my work were involved. I think it's also understandable that slots went to applicants from my place of work before we looked elsewhere.

    I am very aware that there are some churches out there which have practices of which I do not approve. I'm not about to go and tell you what the norm is though -- but I will say that it's folly to make broad assumptions about mission trips.

    And does your church make any attempt to expand its missions work, knowing that they could find even more volunteers if they just opened admissions to people outside of their fellowship?

    If not, why not? Why do they consider the good works done by their members to be enough, such that the effort required to appeal to even more individuals would outweigh the obvious gain?

    And I don't see why non-church participants couldn't fund the trip as well, paying their own way, so the idea that a mission should grant "priority" to church members because it is funded by church members is bogus. In fact, you should welcome non-church participants since they'd free up church funds that can easily go to some other important cause.

    Hooraydiation on
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  • aesiraesir __BANNED USERS
    edited July 2007
    i say we stop bitching about people who had, at heart, good hearted harmless intentions, and instead just kill the motherfuckers who kidnapped them.

    aesir on
  • IncenjucarIncenjucar Audio Game Developer Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    aesir wrote: »
    i say we stop bitching about people who had, at heart, good hearted harmless intentions, and instead just kill the motherfuckers who kidnapped them.

    The road to Hell is paved...

    Incenjucar on
  • HooraydiationHooraydiation Registered User
    edited July 2007
    aesir wrote: »
    i say we stop bitching about people who had, at heart, good hearted harmless intentions, and instead just kill the motherfuckers who kidnapped them.

    Our forums need less discussion and more killing. Come on everybody, let's all get together and plan our own mission... of revenge!

    Hooraydiation on
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  • SerpentSerpent Sometimes Vancouver, BC, sometimes Brisbane, QLDRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Serpent wrote: »
    There's only so much room on these trips. I think it's pretty understandable that members of the church, the members funding the trip, get priority to go on it. My work recently participated with habitat for humanity -- only people from my work were involved. I think it's also understandable that slots went to applicants from my place of work before we looked elsewhere.

    I am very aware that there are some churches out there which have practices of which I do not approve. I'm not about to go and tell you what the norm is though -- but I will say that it's folly to make broad assumptions about mission trips.

    And does your church make any attempt to expand its missions work, knowing that they could find even more volunteers if they just opened admissions to people outside of their fellowship?

    If not, why not? Why do they consider the good works done by their members to be enough, such that the effort required to appeal to even more individuals would outweigh the obvious gain?

    And I don't see why non-church participants couldn't fund the trip as well, paying their own way, so the idea that a mission should grant "priority" to church members because it is funded by church members is bogus. In fact, you should welcome non-church participants since they'd free up church funds that can easily go to some other important cause.

    Re expanding our missions work: this is something we are always doing, but can only be done as fast as their are people willing to take leadership roles. If you've ever worked for a smaller professional division/company, there is very much an issue of growing TOO fast without enough senior/intermediate professionals. This applies very much towards any type of 'goodwill' work.

    On the other hand, there are many secular groups which do similiar work as well, and most are much much larger than my church with many more fulltime staff capable of organizing these trips. If my church were to expand it's volunteer recruitment to attempt to pull from the general populace, I would be willing to bet that the amount of effort that would go into drawing non-christians to our work would be very high compared to the turnout, specifically because some people are going to be turned off by volunteering with a church, and others are going to go and volunteer with a secular organization.

    In addition, a church (or at least, my church) relies much more heavily on volunteers on all aspects of management. It is very, very important to focus management volunteer effort on where there will be the greatest payoff. I am sometimes involved with missions planning, and I would actually tell senior management (ie, the pastor) to shove it if they wanted me to start advertising among the general populace. I don't have the time to waste on something with such expected little payoff.

    Now specifically, regarding 'slots' on our trips: Their isn't physical ROOM where we stay on the mission trips I've been on for more people, nor do we have transportation means for more than about 20 -- and then there is the added hassle of the leader looking after so many people as well.

    tldr: not enough management for not enough payoff.

    Serpent on
  • FirstComradeStalinFirstComradeStalin Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    aesir wrote: »
    i say we stop bitching about people who had, at heart, good hearted harmless intentions, and instead just kill the motherfuckers who kidnapped them.

    You guys know what's funny? That's exactly what the Taliban think about the people who have their own guys in prison.

    FirstComradeStalin on
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  • PicardathonPicardathon Registered User
    edited July 2007
    aesir wrote: »
    i say we stop bitching about people who had, at heart, good hearted harmless intentions, and instead just kill the motherfuckers who kidnapped them.

    Gee, thats a brilliant idea, why didn't I think of that.
    Oh wait, I did, and so did literally everyone else.
    But seriously they want a prisoner swap? Really, I don't think that we should give them fighters in exchange for people who were dumb enough to do this.
    Someone made the rape analogy, but that doesn't make sense. Its more like walking in a dark alley at 3 AM in the worst neighborhood in the city wearing a thong.

    Picardathon on
  • PicardathonPicardathon Registered User
    edited July 2007
    aesir wrote: »
    i say we stop bitching about people who had, at heart, good hearted harmless intentions, and instead just kill the motherfuckers who kidnapped them.

    You guys know what's funny? That's exactly what the Taliban think about the people who have their own guys in prison.

    Although, the Taliban fighters just have good intentions in the Taliban's mind, not good, harmless intentions.

    Picardathon on
  • SerpentSerpent Sometimes Vancouver, BC, sometimes Brisbane, QLDRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    aesir wrote: »
    i say we stop bitching about people who had, at heart, good hearted harmless intentions, and instead just kill the motherfuckers who kidnapped them.

    Gee, thats a brilliant idea, why didn't I think of that.
    Oh wait, I did, and so did literally everyone else.
    But seriously they want a prisoner swap? Really, I don't think that we should give them fighters in exchange for people who were dumb enough to do this.
    Someone made the rape analogy, but that doesn't make sense. Its more like walking in a dark alley at 3 AM in the worst neighborhood in the city wearing a thong.

    While I don't think the swap should be made, you do know the example you just gave is exactly like the rape analogy?

    "It's not the criminals fault, they were asking for it"

    Serpent on
  • PicardathonPicardathon Registered User
    edited July 2007
    Serpent wrote: »
    aesir wrote: »
    i say we stop bitching about people who had, at heart, good hearted harmless intentions, and instead just kill the motherfuckers who kidnapped them.

    Gee, thats a brilliant idea, why didn't I think of that.
    Oh wait, I did, and so did literally everyone else.
    But seriously they want a prisoner swap? Really, I don't think that we should give them fighters in exchange for people who were dumb enough to do this.
    Someone made the rape analogy, but that doesn't make sense. Its more like walking in a dark alley at 3 AM in the worst neighborhood in the city wearing a thong.

    While I don't think the swap should be made, you do know the example you just gave is exactly like the rape analogy?

    "It's not the criminals fault, they were asking for it"

    Yes, its just shows far, far less reason by the victim.
    If the news story said "The Taliban reports that they were in front of the mosque singing Christian hymns." Then I would be far more suspicious. But it seems like the Taliban has provided their excuse, and the only thing that they could have done extra to put themselves in danger would have been burning Quran's.
    Its that particular point that infuriates me so. I mean, just how could you possibly be so dumb and reckless? The only reason that I could come up with is martyrdom. It seems almost clinically insane, displaying your infidelity in a place that is most likely to have one Taliban fighter or informant who would organize the kidnapping of your unarmed band of missionaries.
    And I understand that its wrong and that nobody deserves to die for their stupidity, but when you're in what is essentially a war zone you shouldn't be this stupid. If they were doing this near a mosque in LA or Paris or New Delhi, then that is reasonable, but in a place as dangerous as Afghanistan they basically painted a massive bullseye on themselves.

    Picardathon on
  • IncenjucarIncenjucar Audio Game Developer Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    If nothing else, it's pretty shitty to put yourself in that kind of danger.

    "Hey Taliban, here I am! How would you like some leverage!?"

    Incenjucar on
  • SerpentSerpent Sometimes Vancouver, BC, sometimes Brisbane, QLDRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    If nothing else, it's pretty shitty to put yourself in that kind of danger.

    "Hey Taliban, here I am! How would you like some leverage!?"

    I think we can agree on this. I would not endorse a mission from my church to afghanistan. Some would say that means my faith is weak. I say it means I'm not an idiot.
    sometimes

    Serpent on
  • IncenjucarIncenjucar Audio Game Developer Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Yeah.

    I mean, hell, one of the biggest contributions to terrorism is -ransom money-.

    The good they might be able to do is minimal compared to the damage they can do right now.

    They'd have done better taking that time to make money to donate dragon skin to the troops.

    Incenjucar on
  • HooraydiationHooraydiation Registered User
    edited July 2007
    I don't doubt that this trip wouldn't have happened without someone encouraging the whole lot. Hell, maybe their entire church spurred them to action.

    Hooraydiation on
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  • ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited July 2007
    I have some sympathy for them, but how shit like this gets overblown to "crisis" is why I hate stupid fucking tourists. It's Afghanistan. The UN count of civilian casualties in 2007 was almost at 600 by the end of May. Then 20 idiots get kidnapped, and stop the presses somebody in Afghanistan might die! No shit, it's Afghanistan.

    Yes, it's terrible, but it's also not out of the ordinary, and I'm not going to care more just because they weren't born there.

    Elki on
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  • krapst78krapst78 Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    The reports of them singing in the mosque is based on hearsay but was reported in the local news. I will ask my friends who are a bit more skilled with searching in Korean to find me some concrete links. The rumor is that several of the missionaries had taken the pictures and videos of them at the mosques and placed them on their homepage to promote their mission. Unfortunately in light of the backlash (including reports of people emailing the pictures to the Taliban to actively impede the negotiations) many associated websites have been taken down, including the website for the church that had originally set up the mission.

    The reason I had put "volunteer" in quotations was to imply that certain missions are not without cost. These 'camcorder' missions, where the emphasis is for the participants to actively show their 'devoutness' to others and increase exposure, usually translates into economic benefits for the organizers, .

    I am not condoning the actions of the Taliban in any manner. I think the brutal killing of these hostages is barbaric and that the perpetrators should be prosecuted appropriately based on their actions. At the same time, I don't think the victims should be held unaccountable for their actions. If the evidence shows that these missionaries broke the regional laws by actively proselytizing, they should be held accountable for their actions. Just because they are foreigners it does not exempt them from following the rules of the land, no matter how stupid the laws may be. I may fervently disagree with some of our policies in the US, but that doesn't allow me to break the laws when I'm in the US without facing the consequences. However, the Taliban is not the government, and they shouldn't have the authority to carry out vigilante justice or murder.

    It is not that I don't have sympathy for the victims. I hope just like the millions of other people here glued to the TV that these people are freed and returned home without harm. However, I can still be critical of the tremendous ignorance they displayed by placing themselves in this situation in the first place.

    I have family members and friends who actively participate in Christian based missionary work. When they go, they don't make a huge deal about it and simply treat is as their calling to help out others. I even asked my little cousin who went to India for a week recently to show me pictures of his trip. He actually didn't have any because his purpose there was to assist people and not for travel.

    My friend recently came back from a humanitarian trip from Mexico building houses and evangelizing. He had actually considered going on a mission to South Asia instead, but opted out after educating himself about the actual mission. He learned that Muslims consider it a very serious offense to convert religion and that apostasy is punishable by death in some circles. He seriously weighed the risks to the actual benefits he thought he could accomplish and decided that he could be of greater use in a region far less volatile and less apprehensive about religious evangelicalism. In his situation he made the initiative to actually educated himself about the culture where he would travel to and learned that he would put himself in undue harm.

    Humanitarian efforts and relief missions are some of the most outstanding expressions of compassion. However, sometimes it seems as if the religious fervor or insincere motives of certain groups cause more harm than benefit. When people actively choose to ignore the warning signs and put themselves in harms way maybe we should start questioning what made them so eager to risk it all?

    krapst78 on
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  • VoodooVVoodooV Registered User regular
    edited July 2007
    Nova_C wrote: »
    You know I asked for some kind of cite for that claim that they were singing hymns in front of a mosque. The ONLY place I've seen that claim is in the OP. So I'm going to assume it's false. All the information I've been able to find out about this says that they were on a humanitarian mission funded by a church. Until someone shows me something that says otherwise other than vague innuendo and prejudice, of course.

    And Voodoo seems the type that would blame a woman in short skirt and halter top with being raped. She knew the dangers, flaunted them, and got what she was asking for, right?

    Do you have any idea the sheer amount of humanitarian work people of various faiths do around the world? Let me give you a hint: It's a LOT. I know several missionaries and I've never seen or heard them witness to anyone who didn't first ask. What would you like, Voodoo? For them to say no? That God is only for them and no one else should know him? Riiiiiight.


    Fuck you buddy, you're seriously comparing "I wear short skirts! Tee hee!" to "You know, maybe your country wouldn't suck so much if you believed in Jesus Christ oh and btw, you're welcome for all the help we just gave you"

    Fuck you...

    No one is disputing that church does a lot of humanitarian work. But as other people have already pointed out, there always seems to be a hidden catch to all that "good will"

    VoodooV on
  • Nova_CNova_C I have the need The need for speedRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    VoodooV wrote: »
    No one is disputing that church does a lot of humanitarian work. But as other people have already pointed out, there always seems to be a hidden catch to all that "good will"

    Oh, that's good, Voodoo. Can I make wild generalizations with absolutely no proof too?

    EDIT: Also, SHOW ME SOME GODDAMN PROOF THAT THEY WERE PROSLETYZING. You are basically saying any and all Christians who do anything EVER are doing it to pressure people into joining the faith. Kiss my ass.

    Nova_C on
  • SerpentSerpent Sometimes Vancouver, BC, sometimes Brisbane, QLDRegistered User regular
    edited July 2007
    yah it's almost as if VoodooV isn't reading the thread and is just making wild claims with nothing to back them up

    shocking stuff on the internet!

    Serpent on
  • Der Waffle MousDer Waffle Mous Blame this on the misfortune of your birth. New Yark, New Yark.Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Now, I know that on some twisted level, the "Blame the rape victim" comparison is apt.


    There's only so far you can go with that comparison till you realize that the victim was conciously doing the most retarded and dangerous thing possible, though. Really, it'd be more along the lines of the woman walking naked around a Johannesburg slum where a buss full of convicted rapists just crashed.

    I mean, missionary work in a poor, famine-wracked country, or a disaster zone is one thing, but there's a rather large issue of the complete lack of common sense and irresponsibility in running around a country that's in the middle of a rather heavily publicized religiously-inspired insurgency while being somewhat overtly part of the religion that people in the area still hold the crusades against.

    I'm not saying that I have no sympathy for these people, and seriously, fuck the taliban.

    But, for the love of god, a good part of why they're in this situation is because they were doing something that has to net them a darwin award.

    Der Waffle Mous on
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  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    While what the Taliban are doing is reprehensible, for different reasons I find "kick 'em while they're down" missionaries to reprehensible as well, not to mention in many cases they recklessly endanger aid missions (Asian tsunami).

    electricitylikesme on
  • VoodooVVoodooV Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Oh, that's good, Voodoo. Can I make wild generalizations with absolutely no proof too?

    Well so far, according to you, I'm a rapist apologist, so I'd say you're off to a smashing start! Nice Ad Hominem btw.

    VoodooV on
  • MentalExerciseMentalExercise Indefenestrable Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Ok, you do realize that there is not only absolutely no evidence that any of these people were proselytizing, but the chances are incalculably slim. If you believe otherwise you need to try talking to someone that has maybe, ever, even once, been involved in missionary work. Dummy.

    MentalExercise on
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  • GorakGorak Registered User
    edited August 2007
    Ok, you do realize that there is not only absolutely no evidence that any of these people were proselytizing, but the chances are incalculably slim.

    I don't know about that bolded part. Everyone I've ever met who had been involved in missionary work wanted to "spread the good word" on some level.

    Gorak on
  • Nova_CNova_C I have the need The need for speedRegistered User regular
    edited August 2007
    VoodooV wrote: »
    Well so far, according to you, I'm a rapist apologist, so I'd say you're off to a smashing start! Nice Ad Hominem btw.

    Well all right. It's clear that your prejudice against Christians precludes your ability to objectively debate so we'll just leave it there I suppose.

    Gorak, most Christians do want to 'spread the good word'. Do you think Loren accosts people on the street and tries to turn them athiest? Probably not despite his almost fanatical zeal when it comes to discussing his beliefs. In that same way many, if not most, missions are purely for humanitarian reasons with the caveat that they will witness if asked by the people they are helping.

    Besides, you can look at the Taliban as one extreme. On the other side are the countries that have welcomed missions, given missionaries special protection while totally rejecting the Christian faith. If all Christians are so aggressive in witnessing, why would people who don't want to hear it be so helpful towards visiting missionaries?

    Nova_C on
  • HooraydiationHooraydiation Registered User
    edited August 2007
    What does the Bible say about proselytizing when it's risky or liable to get you killed, anyway? Protecting your own life is probably paramount, but aren't there also a whole lot of martyrs who died preaching in areas as hostile as Afghanistan?

    Should you only risk your life preaching when you feel compelled to by a higher power, or is it something that's technically expected of everyone?

    Hooraydiation on
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  • GorakGorak Registered User
    edited August 2007
    Nova_C wrote: »
    Gorak, most Christians do want to 'spread the good word'. Do you think Loren accosts people on the street and tries to turn them athiest? Probably not despite his almost fanatical zeal when it comes to discussing his beliefs.

    Loren walking down a street is not comparable to missionary work, unless these Koreans are all from Kabul and just happened to be taking a stroll to the corner shop when they were kidnapped. And why use him anyway, when I'd be a far better example. I'm just as much an atheist and far more comparable to a proselytising asshole - knock on my door with a bible in hand if you don't believe me. :lol:

    I'm simply saying that claiming that the chances are "incalculably small" is no better than automatically assuming they were running around shouting fire and brimstone.

    Gorak on
  • krapst78krapst78 Registered User regular
    edited August 2007
    It is actually pretty well accepted now in Korea that these people went to Afghanistan to actively evangelize. Unfortunately, due to the tense circumstances caused by their capture, the Blue House (Korean equivalent of the White House) has issued a decree prohibiting the publication of news that may cast the hostages in a bad light until the situation is resolved. This is because some of this information has reportedly been sent to the Taliban by people in Korea in order to jeopardize their safety and compromise the negotiations. Korea's largest search engine and web portal www.naver.com has openly removed links to this type of information. As you can tell, anti-censorship still has a ways to go here. However, Google is not as popular in Korea and it is still possible to find some of this information there. The Sammuel church has taken down it's website and restricted access to it's BBS. Some of the Google cached websites from the church's web board shows posts of members reporting their eagerness to spread their faith in Afghanistan.

    This is a screenshot taken from one of the missionary's Cyworld page (Cyworld is the largest Korean social networking site and would be similar to combining MySpace and Facebook in the US). Cyworld has now restricted access to this information (the member had originally set the privacy status to 'public')

    http://www.bobaedream.co.kr/board/data/data_view.php?code=strange&No=113113&page=1&select=Subject&content=%BD%CE%C0%CC&r_no=2&search_gubun=&s_pagescale=&search_day=&Answer=10

    The incriminating comments are underlined in red. My Korean skills are pretty poor so if anyone else can clean up my translation, that would be great.

    "we went there and praised"
    "our praise must have been sincere because it rose up like the sound of angels"
    "we went there and performed a service"
    "we went to some desert where no believer had ever stepped there before, but we did haha"
    "but the place was dangerous, with al-qaeda and the Taliban hiding in the area, you never know when you could die"
    "the resting place of a high ranking Afghanistan person"
    "then we worshiped here, it was an unforgettable worship filled with emotion and tears"
    "the Muslim bus driver would get out 5 times to day to pray at set times, when will it be when Jesus is worshiped here in the same way"

    Some of the comments left by visitors have them saying things like
    "What is this? You have some nerves"
    "The reason people curse you is because you do things like this"

    Here is a link to the questionnaire put out by their Church which also includes their itinerary.

    http://agorabbs4.media.daum.net/griffin/do/kin/read?bbsId=K150&articleId=210069

    Some of the questions in the questionnaire are:
    "Do you believe you're a real Christian"
    "Do you have proof you're a reborn Christian"
    "what have you done recently at the church, volunteer work etc..."

    The Itinerary shows that during April 29, May 13, and May 20 they had training sessions for various activities including Worship.
    The Itinerary also shows that from July 13 - August 9 they had some type of "Team Preaching"


    Other information that has been revealed but has yet to be proven include:

    - The Government had actively denied their request to go to Afghanistan over 20 times.
    - When the group finally purchased their tickets to go through Pakistan, they had their tickets revoked. It was only after they threatened legal action that their tickets were returned.

    Conspiracy Theory stuff:
    - The owner of the Chosun Ilbo, the largest newspaper in Korea is a member of their congregation. The Chosun Ilbo is known to be heavily conservative in their editorials.

    krapst78 on
    Hello! My name is Inigo Montoya! You killed my father prepare to die!
  • pirate bobpirate bob Registered User
    edited August 2007
    Nova_C wrote: »
    You know I asked for some kind of cite for that claim that they were singing hymns in front of a mosque. The ONLY place I've seen that claim is in the OP. So I'm going to assume it's false. All the information I've been able to find out about this says that they were on a humanitarian mission funded by a church. Until someone shows me something that says otherwise other than vague innuendo and prejudice, of course.

    Various members posted these pictures on their cyworld pages. The Korean media is by and large incredibly conservative and often leaves out key pieces of information. On the other hand though, the internet communities in Korea are...quick to jump to conclusions as well.

    Some things that probably weren't reported well and passed on to me from my wife reading all the Korean sites: the Korean government warned these people many times not to got to Afganistan (over 20 times). They even sent a plane to Afganistan and asked them to get on it, the church group refused. The church group members all signed wills and statements saying they weren't afraid to die for God's work. Then they go and get captured and the media circus starts.

    * Seems Krapst beat me to it with actual links.

    pirate bob on
    sig.jpg
    If I hide myself wherever I go
    Am I ever really there?
  • SerpentSerpent Sometimes Vancouver, BC, sometimes Brisbane, QLDRegistered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Gorak wrote: »
    Nova_C wrote: »
    Gorak, most Christians do want to 'spread the good word'. Do you think Loren accosts people on the street and tries to turn them athiest? Probably not despite his almost fanatical zeal when it comes to discussing his beliefs.

    Loren walking down a street is not comparable to missionary work, unless these Koreans are all from Kabul and just happened to be taking a stroll to the corner shop when they were kidnapped. And why use him anyway, when I'd be a far better example. I'm just as much an atheist and far more comparable to a proselytising asshole - knock on my door with a bible in hand if you don't believe me. :lol:

    I'm simply saying that claiming that the chances are "incalculably small" is no better than automatically assuming they were running around shouting fire and brimstone.

    Loren (or yourself) doing secular volunteer work though, would be comparable to many missions. If someone asked you why you're doing it, you'd give them your reasons, no? That is exactly what alot of missions are like.

    edit: I'm not going to comment on the likelihood of what these people were ACTUALLY doing though -- I am not them, I am not a member of their church, and so on and so forth. It is definately possible they were doing what many here consider to be a stereotypical mission (although in my experience, the stereotype does not fit).

    Serpent on
  • Nova_CNova_C I have the need The need for speedRegistered User regular
    edited August 2007
    Krapst, thanks, that's what I was looking for.

    Gorak, I wasn't supporting the 'incalculably small' thing as I don't really agree with that either. I was just opposing the tendency of this board to automatically assume the worst about anyone who claims to be Christian.

    Also, Gorak, I wasn't sure if you were athiest or not. :P I picked Loren because I'd argued with him before about it. Anyway, if you were to volunteer for some kind of secularly funded aid project in a third world country and someone asked you if you believed in God, what would you say? I assume you'd respond truthfully. What if they asked why not? Would you brush them off? Tell them you're not here to discuss religion? Or would you share your beliefs with the curious?

    If you did, would you then be a missionary for the athiest cause since the funds that got you there are from a secular organization and you are now talking about why you believe what you do?

    Nova_C on
  • NakedElfNakedElf Registered User
    edited August 2007
    To me the religious aspect is irrelevant--on a basic level I believe that all people ought to be able to go around and talk about their beliefs and try to convince other people to 'do the right thing' whatever they happen to think that right thing is.

    But let's face it, there are safe places in the world to travel to, and there are not-safe places. Afghanistan is a not-safe place. You go to Afghanistan, you are accepting the risk that you will be killed. (Hell, you go to Anacostia, DC, you're accepting that risk.

    There are obviously ways to increase your risk and ways to decrease your risk. I don't recommend walking around Afghanistan and advertising that you're Christian simply because it's a bad idea. But hey, you got a martyr complex and want to get killed 'spreading your faith'? Fine, do whatever you want. But don't get other people fucked over by your stupidity. Don't leave orphans behind. Don't promise stuff you can't deliver. And don't get other people dragged into your religious conflict. Don't expect people to risk their lives and resources to come rescue you because you did something stupid or had a death wish.

    Or to put it another way, as many Korean missionaries as want can go to Afghanistan for all I care, so long as they take care of themselves and don't drag the Korean gov't into the matter, and the Korean gov't makes it clear to everyone involved that it isn't going to lift a finger to help them.

    (That, actually, would probably make things safer for the missionaries in the long run, since it would decrease the incentives to kidnap them.)

    NakedElf on
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