Pastor and missionary Andrew Brunson has been imprisoned in Turkey since last October (2016), but despite his captivity, Brunson’s faith remains strong.
Brunson was initially detained and imprisoned after being accused of aiding the perpetrators of the Turkish coup which took place in July 2016. The Turkish government accused him specifically of being associated with U.S.-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, the reported leader of the coup.
Brunson has consistently denied these charges, stating, “I started a church; I am a man of religion who did this with the state’s knowledge. My aim is to tell about Jesus Christ. I didn’t do espionage.”
Brunson and his supporters have called on the Trump administration to work for his release. ChristianToday.com reports that a delegation from the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom recently visited Brunson and also called for his release.
Despite the (as yet) ineffective nature of these efforts, Brunson continues to trust God. He recently penned a moving song, reminiscent of the Psalms:
“You are worthy, worthy of my all /
My tears and pain I lift up as an offering /
Teach me to share in the fellowship of your suffering /
Lamb of God you are worthy of my all,” say the lyrics.
“I want to be found worthy to stand before you on that day /
With no regrets from cowardice, things left undone /
To hear you say, ‘Well done, my faithful friend, now enter your reward’ Jesus, my Joy, you are the prize I’m running for,” the lyrics continue.
Pastor Andrew Brunson with his wife Norine.
A personal plea for his release from President Trump during a White House meeting in May of this year yielded no success.