University Group in Turkey Mourn, Reflect on Mine Disaster
A group of travelers from the Division of Student Affairs is among the people in Turkey mourning the loss of 282 miners killed in a coal mine explosion in Soma on May 13. According to news reports, as of Thursday, 142 miners are still unaccounted for in the worst mine disaster in Turkey’s history. The Soma mine is approximately 150 miles southwest of the city of Istanbul. Turkey has called for three days of national mourning in the country.
Ten staff members from Hendricks Chapel and the Division of Student Affairs are currently on the 10-Day Journey of the Heart, an immersive professional development experience in Turkey. They learned of the tragedy last night after a day of touring religious and cultural sites in Istanbul.
“Last night as we returned from a day filled with magnificent visits to Istanbul’s most sacred sites, we heard the tragic news of the Soma mine explosion,” says Hendricks Chapel Dean Tiffany Steinwert. “From the mountaintop experience of encountering the holy in the Hagia Sophia, praying in the Blue Mosque, venerating Muslim, Jewish and Christian holy relics in Topkapi Palace and witnessing the poetic dance of the Whirling Dervishes, we found ourselves plunged into the valley of human suffering.”
“Awaiting news of their family, friends and colleagues, miners weep, families grieve, the nation mourns and, we mourn with them,” Steinwert says.
To read the entire text of Steinwert’s statement and reflection, visit http://hendrickschapel.tumblr.com/post/85787325780/day-4-prayer.