VARIOUS CITIES, INDONESIA – Christmas Eve is a very important time for devout Christians and a favourite time to attend services in a church: too bad terrorists have to spoil the occasion.
If you are a Christian, particularly a Western one, you know that Christmas Eve is a tradition. Many families attend local churches in preparation for the following day when the birth of Jesus Christ is commemorated. For a lot of Christians the evening service is preferable to one the following morning. After all, Christmas Day is all about opening presents and stuffing your face, no?
In my remembering churches were packed on Christmas Eve. The mood was festive and the usually dour and sombre music was down right cheery! Everyone seemed to be in great spirits – no NOT the ones which visited Ebenezer Scrooge in the Charles Dickens classic A Christmas Carol – and smiles were everywhere.
Thankfully, we did not have to worry about terrorists attacking our services. Indonesians on Christmas Eve two decaback in 2000 were not as fortunate.
On this day in 2000
Terrorists believed to be part of Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) bombed several churches in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta, and throughout the country, killing 14 people and wounding scores. The following day some churches were only half full, because of fears of new attacks, and police searched worshippers’ bags.
The government must not hesitate to crack down on those responsible for such a criminal act against humanity.Archbishop Cardinal Julius Darmaatmaja
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