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Funerals held for victims of bomb attacks on Indonesia churches

Posted on: May 18, 2018 6:47 AM
A floral tribute at the Roman Catholic Church of Immaculate Santa Maria in Surabaya, “with love and prayer from the family of worldwide Anglican Churches and the Anglican Church of Indonesia”. Similar floral tributes were left at the Gereja Kristen Indonesia (Christian Church of Indonesian) in Jalan Diponegoro and the Pentecostal Church on Jalan Arjunodate
Photo Credit: GAI

Funerals have been held for some of the victims of those killed in last Sunday’s suicide bomb attacks on three Christian churches in Surabaya. In one, 12-year-old Vincentius Evan, who was killed instantly when a bomb detonated at the Roman Catholic Church of Immaculate Santa Maria, and his eight-year-old brother Nathanael, who died a short time later in hospital, were laid to rest. Their mother, Wenny Angelina, attended the service on a stretcher, connected to drips and attended to by medical staff. She was seriously injured in the attack and allowed to leave the hospital for the service before returning. The family had just arrived at the church and were getting out of their car when the bomb went off.

One victims has yet to be formally identified, but is believed to be 38-year-old Aloysius Bayu Rendra Wardhana. The church youth worker, and father of a three-month-old child, tried to prevent the suicide bombers reaching St Mary’s Church. His family are awaiting the results of DNA tests before his remains can be released for burial. “We’re still waiting for the DNA identification process in Jakarta,” his cousin, Lucia Cicilia Agan, told The Jakarta Post. “On Tuesday morning, DNA samples from Bayu’s child and father were taken to Jakarta.

“His wife and mother are in a state of deep sadness. They don't have the energy to wait for the DNA identification process (to be completed). So I’m the one who takes care of this at the police station.”

A teenager was amongst those killed in the attack at the Pentecostal Church. Daniel had been helping his father co-ordinate car parking near the church. He, and a security agent, Giricatur, tried to block the attacker’s minivan reaching the church compound. They were both killed when the bomb detonated.

In total, 25 people were killed as a result of five separate bombs in Surabaya on Sunday and Monday. That figure includes 13 people who were suicide bombers and their children.

The Revd Dr Timothy Chong, Dean of the Gereja Anglikan Indonesia (the Anglican Church of Indonesia), visited the three churches in Surabaya on Tuesday. “We brought words of encouragement and prayed for them,” he told the Anglican Communion News Service.

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The Dean of the Gereja Anglikan Indonesia (the Anglican Church of Indonesia), the Revd Dr Timothy Chong, prays with leaders of the Gereja Kristen Indonesia (Christian Church of Indonesian) in Jalan Diponegoro following last Sunday’s terror attack.
Photo: GAI

“That evening we sent three sets of wreaths to the Churches expressing our solidarity with them in their grief and pain . . . on behalf of the worldwide Anglican churches.

“Do remember us in prayer as the situation is not over yet.”