EgyptAir flight MS 804 with 56 passengers and 10 crew members left
Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris last week on an airbus A320 headed for Cairo just a few hours before Alan and I, with our two youngest sons,
were to leave Paris on a Vueling Airbus A320 headed for Venice. EgyptAir’s flight MS 804 disappeared on its way to Cairo.
That was May 19, and as of today, it’s thought that all persons aboard have died, although investigations are ongoing.
According to data collected from a black box which Egyptian sources retrieved, it appears that a bomb was planted and exploded on the right front side of the plane. Investigators also uncovered the gruesome fact that vandals had painted graffiti on the aircraft two years earlier threatening: “We will bring this plane down.” The grief is deep, and my heart goes out to all those who lost loved ones, including 3 young orphans whose parents were just returning to Cairo after receiving cancer treatment in France. When we arrived at Charles de Gaulle early on the morning of May 19, we heard that EgyptAir flight MS804 had disappeared, and we also heard rumors that the air traffic controllers were going to strike that day, so we waited somewhat restlessly to see if our flight would even go. Although the atmosphere was relatively calm externally, there was electricity in the air, and it was obvious that everyone was anxious. Detectives have been hard at work trying to track down suspects, but there are some 85,000 people who have “red badge” security clearance and access to restricted areas…a huge pool, particularly when no terrorist group has boasted responsibility for the explosion.
Our flight was delayed, but we did finally take off
(followed by an EgyptianAir craft!) and made it safely to Venice and the warm welcome of our son Michael’s family. We had a short but happy visit with our “Italian” family, dropped off Stephen and Joel (who are staying another few weeks)
and have now made it safely back to GR. However, Alan and I are definitely noticing that travel is becoming less reliable and more dangerous. Our world is full of insecurity and danger. As Christians, how should we respond? Should we restrict our activities and batten down the hatches against attack? We are certainly called to prayerfully seek and do God’s will,
but if we believe we’re following God,
then there is a comforting verse that often comes to my mind: “And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh” (Luke 21:28). God is coming back to make things right some day,but until then, it’s probably appropriate to “Keep calm and carry on.”
(All these photos were taken on our recent trip to France and Italy. I hope to share more of what we saw and learned over the next few weeks.)