We are taking a week’s holiday and we chose Turkey. We arrived in Istanbul yesterday. Amazing, wonderful, historical city. The people are REALLY REALLY friendly and I totally recommend all my friends to come to this country to visit and enjoy. Last night I went out with my son, Sam, who is with us for a few more days before leaving us to study filmmaking in Wellington.
Watch out, Peter Jackson!
A few days ago, Turkey announced that they are handing back to the non-Muslim minorities a billion dollars worth of buildings that were confiscated since 1936. The Christians will also be allowed to reopen their Seminary that was closed in 1985. FANTASTIC! This is a great move and one that will no doubt speed their journey into joining the EU.
I hope the churches, who have 12 months to reclaim these buildings, schools, cemeteries, etc, will use them wisely. I bet other countries will offer to help them think through what could be done to repurpose some of those buildings for ministry in the 21st century. I know I have some ideas . . . .
The Hagia Sofia, of course, will remain a musuem. It was taken a long time ago and thats all water under the bridge. Bummer!