Monday, 31 August 2015
By Far Euphrates - Deborah Alcock
Alcock writes with her usual depth and detail but perhaps her direct emotional involvement is what makes this book particularly powerful and gripping. The persecution of Armenian Christians in the late 1800s was truly awful; indiscriminate killing of men and boys, women and children saved alive to be subjected to worse horrors. In a helpful appendix Alcock explains which characters were real and which were fictional. She also makes it clear that the atrocities described in the book left much detail out - she felt it impossible to depict the worst features of the horrible crimes committed.
Tragically some of the events described seem sadly and horribly familiar in these current times. Christians are being persecuted in 139 nations around the world. The news that feeds through to our western society is often biased and secular neither recognising nor understanding the religious elements often involved in the incidents reported. I recently read this article 'Why don't we hear more about persecuted Christians' which gives food for thought on this subject. It is a subject which at the very least, should be kept often in our prayers.