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Wednesday, 30 May 2012

From darkness to light.... for one, for many?

Julie Aftab - survivor, example of God's ability to 'work out all things for good'

Julie Aftab was a fun loving child who had to leave school at age 12 to work 13 hour days to support her family.  She described it as the worst day of her life, as she dreamed of going to college.  At work, she always wore her cross.  Age 16, this offended someone (some sources also say that her refusal to be in a relationship was also a factor in what happened), and she was at work when one man burst in and threw acid at her from a distance, then another pulled her by the hair from behind and poured acid on her face and down her throat.  She lost teeth, her cheek and an eye in the attack.  She was rushed to hospital, but many refused to treat her for fear of retaliation by the perpetrators.  Those that were willing to treat her started skin grafts, some of them without anaesthetic.  

Typically, her attackers were never brought to justice and still walk free.  Her attacker falsely claimed that Julie had blasphemed against Islam to justify his actions and to put pressure on her - her life was still in danger  She barely escaped alive after a man tried to shoot her.  She moved her head just enough when her mum called out a warning, but she was hit with bullets in the head and the stomach

A sponsor arranged for her to go to the US, where she had to undergo 27 operations.  She spoke no English, but started to go to school, and later became the first person in her family to go to college.  She works in a store to support her family still.  She has also raised funds to build a safe house in Pakistan.  'Before I wanted to save peoples bodies' (as a doctor) she says, 'but now I want to save souls'.  

Her life is a picture of Jesus teaching on forgiveness, and a radiant beauty that is beyond skin deep, and she recently got engaged as well as being about to graduate, not from college, but from university!

For more sources, see here, here and here

1 comment:

  1. This is Gulnaz Aftab an acid victim from my home town, Faisalabad to whom I helped for two years in her earlier days before going USA. I am very happy to see her video and her development. Shahbaz Bhatti Martyr also helped her and provided legal aid through our charity. Stephen Anjum Birmingham, UK