Sunday, January 4, 2009


Hey Everyone,

This evening (Jan.3, 2009) 4 missionary families (including us) were robbed on the beach by a group of 6 men brandishing glass bottles. They took purses that were on some chairs and grabbed a digital camera out of the hands of one of the ladies. Immediately, one of the missionaries yelled and charged at them and the woman that had the camera taken from her screamed as she struggled with the man grabbing it from her. All this sent the robbers into a panic and they ran away with only 2 bags and the camera. Unfortunately for us, both bags belonged to our family. Alace and I lost our wallet with about $100. Since everything is done in cash here, you generally have a decent amount with you. By the grace of God, I had just taken $400 from my wallet prior to coming to the beach, and left it at home.

The children were all spooked and crying as they watch the 4 men run after the bandits. We realized the we were all leaving the women and children, so 1 of us returned to get stuff packed up and the kids into a car.

Thiefs are really looked down upon here, so chasing and yelling is the thing to do in hopes that you'll get a community response. However, the robbers knew where they were going and ran under a bridge and up a riverway to the backside of some large buildings. We didn't think it was wise to follow them too far.

I'm calling credit card companies and starting to work through the process of replacing our carte de sejour, as well as our house keys and other things. It's all just stuff.

We are so thankful that no one was hurt. We came together as a group after gathering ourselves together and prayed for the bandits. We pray that our families will not be undanted in our growing love for Gabon and the beautiful people here.

I'll be in touch with more details.



ps. Here are the names of the missionaries involved:

Arnie & Cheryl S. and 3 kids

Tim & Meredith B.

Us and our 3 kiddos

One other non-C&MA missionary couple and 3 kids

pps. You all would have been proud of Alace. When the bandits all ran under the bridge and we thought they had stayed under there to hide, she walked to the overpass and yelled down... "come out of there you cowards!!!" ...she later realized that she said this in English.

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