By George & Carol Miller, 10-19-23
First Baptist Church Fernandina Beach (FBCFB) conducted a tour of the Holy Land, bringing 54 mostly NE Florida people into Israel to visit historical Biblical sites, learn about events transpiring there and their significance. Unfortunately, HAMAS terrorists chose the same time frame to launch the biggest, bloodiest attack on Israel since the Yom Kippur war with the most loss of Israeli life since the Holocaust. It consisted of possibly thousands of invaders who attacked military and civilian targets in particularly gruesome ways, violating the rules of war.
The group was only a few miles from places that were attacked but fortunately was not attacked or injured.
Israel appeared to be caught off guard but soon retaliated, killing Hamas terrorists and bombing HAMAS targets in Gaza, where most of the personnel and thousands of missile attacks originated. Total deaths on both sides military/civilian already exceed at least 5000 and climbing.
Fortunately, at least some prayers were answered. After fleeing by bus to Jordan and making travel arrangements, the Tour Group returned safe and sound by last weekend. Cheers and tears were shared as one group entered the JAX terminal with smiles.
On Wednesday, October 18th, event organizer Senior Pastor Zach Terry led a group discussion at their weekly Wednesday meeting with the members of the First Baptist Israel Tour Group for church and other attendees. Here is a link to this first-hand account of their trials and tribulations on getting home from the war zone.
George Miller is Publisher and Co-Founder of Citizens Journal Florida, based in Fernandina Beach. He is a “retired” operations management consultant, software and publishing executive (10 years) and manufacturing management professional.
Carol Miller is Associate Editor of Citizens Journal Florida, based in Fernandina Beach. She is a “retired” teacher and is also involved in local civic and charitable pursuits.