200 people dead, but who would know?


In the same week, just recently. fundamentalists of a certain type attacked two different centres in two different countries.  

One, of course, was the shopping centre in Nairobi. Tragic stuff. People were hauled up to answer questions and shot in cold blood if they couldn't give the correct response. Tourists, westerners, shoppers, families and children, doing what they would normally do, were among the dead. The lucky ones escaped with their lives, but they will carry the trauma with them forever. 

The other attack was not in a shopping centre. It wasn't in a capital city. No tourists or westerners were involved. No vile quizzes and open-eyed shootings. Plus it was in a country where 'they're used' to these sorts of things.

And at this point, I wonder if we've all tuned out. 

Because the Australian media did. Okay, it made the online newspapers and sites, but you'd have been lucky to hear about a double suicide bombing that killed 200 people at a church in Peshawar, Pakistan, last week.  

We followed the Nairobi shopping centre siege for four or five days, but the destruction of an entire congregation and dozens of families was 'over' in hours. 

Except it's not over of course. A Pakistani Christian living in Sydney estimates that almost every Christian family in the country will know or love someone who was killed in the blasts. 

And what about next Sunday morning? And the Sunday after that? Will people get up and take their children to church? Can they live 'normal lives' knowing that they are under attack, whether it's overt or undercover?

I'm blaming the media for not telling people about it, but the truth is, the media shows us what we want to see and we don't really care about the church bombing in Pakistan. And if I'm honest, I only care because I know Pakistani people, because I lived in the country and because I've been to Peshawar. 

So I'm sad for the state of the world, and I'm sad for the state of my heart because I can only bear to process a tiny, minute amount of the incomprehensible pain and suffering and destruction that goes on in this life.

If we all saw what we all needed to see, would things change?