With our Rapid Response Team Chaplains on the ground in Mati, the scene of the devastating fires, we are receiving stories from those affected.
As you read these stories, please join us in prayer for the residents and the nation of Greece.
May they know peace in Christ and experience hope in their darkest hour.
The Chaplains met with Theo, an 84 year old, who had stayed in his house throughout the fire whilst his wife was in Athens. Next door his brothers had a home, they also were in Athens. Theo had sought help from youth to help clean away the remains of his brother’s house. A team of six were clearing rubble. He explained, through an interpreter, that it was a frightening experience however he and all his family were safe. They had lost one home. He was proud of his home and invited the chaplains in to show them photographs of his wife and his time as a soccer goalkeeper for top grade sides. He thanked the Chaplains for taking time to visit and talk with him.
The chaplains met with Kostas who was clearing the front of his home. Kostas is a dentist and had been living in Slovenia for the last 15 years. Some time ago he made the decision to return to Greece and work. He had returned only for holidays. A few weeks ago he packed and shipped most of his belongings back to Greece. He heard about the fires shortly before leaving Slovenia. He arrived on Thursday to find that apart from some minor damage to shutters and windows his house was intact. Kostas felt guilty. He couldn’t understand how fortunate he had been when his next door neighbour’s house had been totally destroyed. Kostas allowed the chaplains to pray with him.
Aris and Adrianna
Aris and his wife, Adrianna, had gone out together for the first time in a while. They have two young children and grandparents who live abroad. The grandparents were visiting and looked after the children. When the fire struck they had seconds to leave the house. The grandparents put the children in a car and drove away but having gone only 500 yards they couldn’t drive any further due to flames and smoke. They got out and ran to the beach from where they were eventually rescued. Aris was thankful that all had survived and stated that he didn’t care that their holiday home had been totally destroyed.
While sitting in her car under a carport the Chaplains noticed a woman, Katerina, getting ready to leave. The Chaplains waved as the woman smiled. As they approached she got out and asked the Chaplain what they were doing. They explained that they were followers of Jesus and that they were simply walking in the community praying and listening to people. She said, “I didn’t know there were people who cared”. The Chaplains told her that they loved her and that Jesus even loved her more. She went on to tell a horrific story of her elderly mother staying inside her home as the fire raced by. The mother told her daughter on the telephone she was going to die because she could not escape the fire. Katerina, said she told her mother to pray and she herself prayed. God answered their prayers. We all thanked God for sparing her mother
Please pray for those affected and for our Chaplains