Pastor Andrew Brunson may be released from Turkey next month at a hearing, according to reports.
Brunson is under arrest and spent two years in a Turkish prison. It wasn’t until more than a year into his imprisonment that authorities finally charged him with “Christianization.”
According to Breitbart.com, the formal charge is terrorism and espionage. He could face up to 35 years in custody in Turkey.
Brunson’s daughter, Jacqueline Furnari, spoke at this year's Values Voter Summit in Washington, saying God is in control of the situation.
“There have been times I have not been happy with God's plan in this situation,” she said. “I've really come to realize God is in complete control and He has a plan and this is all for his glory. He is worth everything that my family has gone through."
She says her father was held with 22 people in a cell meant for eight people. She says he now has anxiety and depression.
She says her father has been able to write letters to her, saying he is trusting in God.
“I've seen that message come through in my dad's letters as well as he started to transform and submit to God and say, 'God, my life is yours. Whatever you do with me let it honor you, let it declare your name and your goodness to people.’”
During the summit, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the U.S. is working for Brunson’s release.
“We are sparing no effort to return Pastor Brunson to the United States … he has been wrongly held, and his proper place is to be able to return here to once again practice his faith in our great nation,” Pompeo said. “Know this, President Trump will never forget about our own.”
Photo courtesy: Chuttersnap/Unsplash
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.