The family of a 4-year-old girl who was wounded when a terrorist bombed the Gereja Oikumene Church in Indonesia, on Nov. 13, has chosen forgiveness and hope over anger.
Trinity Hutahaean was among those injured when a terrorist with ties to the Islamic State — a man who was reportedly donning a shirt that read “Jihad Way of Life” — threw molotov cocktails at a group of children playing in front of the house of worship, according to the Jakarta Post.
Roina Simanjuntak, Trinity’s aunt, later told the media that the family has forgiven the alleged perpetrator, who is being identified as “Johanda” (a man also known as: Jo bin Muhammad Aceng) and that, rather than seek or hope for revenge for the horrific injuries he caused, they will let God decide how to handle the act of evil.
“God teaches us to forgive and not to pay revenge,” Simanjuntak proclaimed. “I have a big hope that my family members, especially Trinity’s mother, can face this hard time. She is still in trauma after seeing what happened to her child.”
Trinity was among three injured at the church in Samarinda, with another child, identified as Intan Olivia, dying just hours after the bombing due to severe burns on her body.
“The man passed by the church and threw what we suspected was low-explosive cocktail bombs, causing light injuries to four children who were playing there,” said Fajar Setiawan, a local police spokesman, according to the BBC.
It was a shocking attack that led Indonesian President Joko Widodo to say that the case needs to “be investigated thoroughly,” with lawmaker Eva Sundari saying the government must “improve its de-radicalization program,” TIME reported.
The city of Samarinda reportedly has a Muslim-majority, but also has a sizable portion of Catholic and Protestant Christians.
And according to the Jakarta Post, the goal behind the attack was to incite sectarian strife and furor between Muslims and Christians in the region, though the outlet reported that members of both religious groups came together to decry the act.
As for Johanda, he had reportedly been on parole for an unrelated incident — a terror attack in Jakarta last January. He was slated to be imprisoned until 2017, but his sentence was cut short before he was granted parole, the Christian Post reported.
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