Monday, April 03, 2006

Re: Love's Grace & A Carroll Family Reunion

Monday Afternoon ~ Gracias Hermana Kristen ~ Thank You! I do appreciate your sharing as I will share in turn and blog it as the CASA 12-Steps Program Blog! Plus, I want to include this post from the CS Monitor News Page. See Ya Friday!
Blessings, Your Brother In Christ, Peta
April 04, 2006 edition

BOSTON BOUND: Jill Carroll admires her rose and the view from the aircraft.
More photos

A Carroll family reunion
After 82 Days in captivity in Iraq, reporter Jill Carroll joyfully joined her parents and sister in Boston.

The air was filled with sweet anticipation as Jill Carroll's family watched the TV images of Lufthansa flight 422 from Germany touching down at Logan Airport in Boston Sunday. function OpenPopUp(filename,title,width,height) {var myWindow =,title,width,height);}
A LONG-AWAITED REUNION: After 12 weeks of captivity, a day of debriefing, and a long journey from Baghdad, Jill Carroll finally reached the embrace of her family.
A Spiritual Perspective

On a table in their apartment, twin sister Katie set up a laptop computer showing rotating pictures of Jill's cat, Squeaky. Jill had rescued the stray while living and working as a journalist in Jordan in 2002.
The TV set was tuned to Fox News, then to local news channels. News helicopters hovered over the airport, their cameras tracking the white 747 and then Jill's limo as it left the airport.
As Jill and her Monitor colleagues emerged from the airport tunnel under Boston Harbor, Jill called Katie's cellphone. She spoke first to Katie, then to each parent. Her mother was the last to speak to her: "Jillyjuicey!" she said in delight, using a childhood nickname.
"I-love-yous" were exchanged before hanging up. Jill teetered on the verge of emotional overload.
Jim Carroll had the video camera running when an unmarked van pulled up. At first, the Carroll family wasn't sure if it was Jill or not.
They crowded around an open window and yelled another of Jill's nicknames, "Zippy," and waved wildly.
Seconds later, she came through the door and the family, coming down the hallway, met her in a single embrace.
Jill wept, and said, "I'm sorry."
Between the hugs and tears and tender touches, Jill began to share snippets of her ordeal. To ward off boredom while in captivity in Iraq, she sang to herself. "I sang, "way out West where the bad men are...."
Everyone laughed. "They didn't know what I was saying," she giggled.
Even grimmer topics evoked relief. Jill said her Muslim kidnappers assumed that all American journalists were Jewish. To persuade them that she was Christian, she recited the Lord's Prayer and shared Christian stories from the Bible. She thanked her mom for her Roman Catholic upbringing. Even after her captors were persuaded that she was Christian, Jill said, they kept trying to convert her.
Jill said she talked quite a bit with the kidnappers. "Well, at least your Arabic will have improved," Mary Beth, her mom, remarked.
Mary Beth asked if Jill could exercise in captivity. "I walked a lot" around the room, which was eight paces long, Jill told her family, and did squats to keep in shape.

Links of interest

Most-viewed stories (for 04/02)

Kristen Wakefield <> wrote:

By John McCain

There was one other occasion during my imprisonment that moved me greatly as evidence of Gods transcending love. During the time I was held in solitary, I was caught, not for the first time, communicating with my dear friend in the cell next to mine. For my transgression, I was kept overnight in a punishment cell tied very tightly in ropes. On this
particular night as I sat on the stool cursing my bad luck, and straining against the painfully tightened ropes, the door suddenly opened and a young gun guard I had occasionally seen wandering around the camp entered the room. He motioned to me to remain silent by placing his finger to his lips, and then, without smiling or even looking me in the eyes, proceeded to loosen the ropes that bound me. His kind action completed, he left without uttering a word to me. As dawn approached, he returned to tighten the ropes
before he finished his watch and another guard might have discovered what he had done.

In the months that followed, I occasionally saw my Good Samaritan when I was moved from one part of the prison to another. He never allowed himself a glance in my direction, much less spoke to me, until one Christmas morning, when I was briefly allowed out of my cell to stand alone in the outdoors and look up at the clear, blue sky. As I was looking at the heavens, I became aware of him as he walked near me and then, for a moment, stood very close to me. He did not speak or smile or look at me. He just stared at the ground in front of us, and then, very casually, he used
his foot to draw a cross in the dirt. We both stood looking at his work for a minute until he rubbed it out and walked away. For just that moment I forgot all my hatred for my enemies, and all the hatred most of them felt for me. I forgot about the Jerk, and the interrogators who persecuted my friends and me. I forgot about the war, and the terrible things that war does to you. I was just one Christian venerating the cross with a fellow Christian on Christmas morning. I saw him again occasionally. But he never
looked at me or attempted to speak to me. We never worshiped together again. But I have never forgotten him or the kindness he showed me as a testament to the faith we shared. That experience helped to form my lasting appreciation for my own religious faith, and it took the faith of an enemy to reveal it to me, the faith that unites and never divides, the faith that bridges the unbridgeable divisions in humanity, the faith that we are all, sinners and
saints alike, children of God. I became a better man, a stronger man, a more faithful man, who, for at least a moment, could love his enemies.

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