I saw this on Dan’s “The Battle Cry” blog. The Gospel is an unpopular message in a world that has a sinful nature. I think this sums up Biblical teaching that separates by eons the God of the Bible from any other “god.” I’m not sure why they used the setting they did but I thought that it was significant. The “Church” appears to be falling apart in our day but it is not the case. The true Church of Jesus Christ will be saved by the mercy and grace of God alone. The great work has already been done on the cross at Calvary. I don’t know that it is the best presentation of the Gospel ever but I do think you should click on “view original post” below.
A prayer for the New Year, that Baby Aryan and others like him are returned to their loving families in 2017.
Before the reblog of the Headlined story above, I would like to publish an email that I recently received. My name and the name of this blog has been added to the signed letter below. If you would like your name included in this appeal to the External Affairs Minister of India, just let me know in the comment section and I will forward your name to Suranya Aiyar who is very active in trying to help this family.
23 December 2016
Her Excellency, Mrs Sushma Swaraj
External Affairs Minister of India
Subject: Norwegians and International Activists join Indians in urging Indian
Government to save Indian child in Norway
We, the undersigned citizens and residents of Norway, relatives of victims in Norway and activists from around the world, are writing to express our support for your intervention in the matter of the 5-year-old only child of Anil Kumar and Gurvinderjit Kaur who has been snatched by Barnevernet in Oslo, Norway last week.
Barnevernet, the Norwegian child protection authority has for many years been wrongly taking children from loving parents in Norway. The reasons are incompetence, overbearing officials, lack of transparency, inadequate
judicial oversight,and, in cases involving cultural and religious minorities, prejudice andracism.
Some of us have ourselves been victims of Barnevernet. We have been campaigning against Norway’s cruel child protection regime for years and this year alone there have been protests every month against Barnevernet attended by hundreds in cities around Norway. Supporting protests have been held in many countries around the world, including the United States of America, Russia, Australia, Brazil, Romania, Czechia,Lithuania and India.
We appreciate India’s earlier efforts in saving Indian children from Barnevernet and highlighting the human rights abuses of Barnevernet in Norway. We urge you to spare no effort in enabling the child of Anil Kumar and Gurvinderjit Kaur to be reunited with his family in Norway or repatriated to India where he can be brought up by his extended family in the country and culture of his origin, and to which he has been used since birth. This is his right under both Norwegian law and international law.
The Norwegian government and their CPS (Barnevernet) have not reformed their ways as was hoped after the international embarrassment they suffered in the wake of snatching the five Bodnariu children.
Barnevernet is back on the international scene because they secretly removed Aryan, an Indian boy (mother Indian citizen) while he was in school for alledged slapping by the parents. Same tactic was used in the Bodnariu case. No warning, no court order, no social intervention or “help,” only the nuclear option. This is how Barnevernet operates.
Well, the parents are now crying out for international support and they have been featured on English-language CNN in India. Delight in Truth friend, attorney Suranya Aiyar was featured on the program with strong and passionate arguments against Barnevernet.
Looks like we are on the verge of another international scandal, and Norway and Barnevernet victims need it! Maybe the shame will reach an unbearable…
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I saw this on Ingrid Schlueter’s The Hope Blog today.
I had to share it because it reminds me so much of the unmerited grace that God has had on me. There is pain, there is sadness, yet there is hope and joy.
by Ragna Heffermehl:
To Norway from Iraq. Here, her 5 children are taken away
“Forgive them, because they don’t know what they do.”
I peek into the hallway of the woman who lost all her kids to the Norwegian Child Protection Service, called “Barnevernet”, just before our National Day, 17th of May last year. Their shoes are still there, labels with their names ironed on the inside. “She probably can’t bear to remove them,” I’m thinking. Silently I ask myself how much too small those shoes will be, when – or if – the children are allowed to come home.
One after one, the children have stood alone in court, court case after court case, and asked to come home. This mother is the last trace of family they’ve got here, as she is a widow who has escaped from Iraq. All of the siblings, except two, were put in different locations. All the time since they were removed, they have cried and pled. They have offered Barnevernet money. They have drawn faces covered with tears. Barnevernet reports that the children are “crying, but mostly when they see their mother.”
And the mother loves her children. That is even confirmed by Barnevernet, and by the judges in court. However, they express doubt whether she is able to give her children “emotional support,” a professional term which is accepted without question by the judges, and which bends them towards their tragic conclusion: the mother is not fit. Nobody seems to think that “love” and “emotional support” are related in some way. Love is obviously not given much credit.
Norwegian Standard, abbreviated NS
There’s a new documentary about Barnevernet in the making, called Norwegian Standard. The abbreviation is NS – which was also the name that the Norwegian Nazi party during the war, “Nasjonal Samling”, went under. So I’m tempted to search for similarities between the Norwegian system and the Nazi regime. What I find is the lack of love. Love means nothing. Intellectual and professional constructions legitimize brutal violations by the bureaucrats, who are merely “doing their job.” Is it unpleasant to remove children from their families? Sure. At least until you get used to it.
“I understand that you miss your children,” the employee from Barnevernet purrs to the devastated mother, “but the children are very well taken care of. Two of them are living together in a huge, modern house. They are successful at school. Their new parents are not working, so they can take care of the children all the time.”
What a poor relief to the mother, that the new parents don’t need to work for a living, and that they have such a nice, big house.
Barnevernet seems to have a preference for people with high socio-economic status when it comes to choosing who are suited as parents for the children of the Norwegian state. This mother, like so many others, has been accused of being too poor.
Another alternative favoured by Barnevernet is to select foster parents for whom they create good economic conditions by paying them rather generously. To aspiring foster parents, Barnevernet is a most lucrative opportunity. In several cases, foster parents have been paid for their new “needs” such as an extra car, or renovation of their house, with the new child as leverage. They’re also granted the use of extra, temporary step-in foster parents, who take care of the child during holidays.
More tempting still is the offer of the equivalent of a full salary, so that one foster parent can stay home and ensure good care of the child.
The economic advantages of being a foster parent are heavily advertised by the state, regardless of the fact that it may attract people with other motives than to love a child like their own. The state is in desperate need of foster homes. On average, the state removes 5 children from their parents every day – in one of the smallest countries in the world.
The Norwegian professor Tove Stang-Dahl has done research on the history of Barnevernet. Her conclusion is this: “In an uninterrupted line from the end of the 18th century and right until this day, the explicit goal of Barnevernet has been to weaken the power and freedom of the family. The premise has been the same the whole time: to exert social control over the groups in society who are, at any point in time, seen as a threat against social order.”
The dark depths of our human mind
Last year, the mother had hoped to celebrate Christmas with her children. Barnevernet refused, and told her to deliver her gifts at their office, for professional distribution to each child. This Christmas, she has lost any hope of seeing her children. Barnevernet won’t give her more than what the judges said: 4 times a year, 1.5 hour each time, supervised. That means there has to be an observer from Barnevernet, who can’t leave the mother and child alone at any moment – not even in the bathroom. An interpreter is also there, to translate everything they say to each other.
To the victims, it may seem like Barnevernet, with its unlimited power to destroy the lives of individuals, experiences a subtle joy in doing exactly that. Unfortunately, I believe it’s a human trait. The famous Stanford experiment illustrates this. 21 mentally healthy persons were randomly given roles as “prisoners” or “guards,” and placed in a prison-like locale. The guards were instructed to “keep order,” nothing else – and psychologists were to observe what happened. The experiment was meant to last 2 weeks, but had to be stopped after 6 days, because of how the guards abused the prisoners, harassing them psychologically and forcing them to do humiliating things. By the end of the 6 days, a third of the guards were believed to have developed sadistic traits.
In our human minds, the same psychological mechanisms are latent. And they will flourish if the power structure allows them to.
Norwegian law on children – breeding ground for abuse
It heads the wrong way. Before, the law said that children should live with their biological parents, if possible. In 2012, this law was reformulated. Now, they have the “right” to grow up with people who can provide the best conditions materially and mentally. The children are to be “good and productive citizens, for the nation’s best,” the law says. This sentence reminds me of Nazi perfectionism. It can justify almost any abduction from parents with lower socio-economic status. We have to ask which values are the most important: the love of the parents, or the development of “productive citizens?”
A Christmas Wish
“Forgive them, for they don’t know what they do.”
I’m writing Christmas cards. Thinking of my friends, and my enemies, and of the ones whom it might be time to forgive. And I think of my new friend from abroad, who’s sticking to me as if clutching at a straw. Because I’m Norwegian, probably. But who am I against Barnevernet? The people there have developed a very thick shell. In a system where cruel decisions are a part of their everyday job, they will not bend to any appeal for empathy. They don’t listen to anybody – not even doctors, nurses, or psychologists who sometimes very openly disagree with their decisions to separate a family, based on their own observations of that family. I’m really nothing more than a straw in this field, a field ravaged by storms of prejudices and by a past most of us are ignorant of.
Can one really forgive, without the other party admitting and changing anything? It seems that for politicians and for Barnevernet it is difficult to admit that something has gone wrong. They seldom talk about the pain inflicted upon children and parents. I’ve rarely seen anything coming close to a real debate, without all the justifications for Barnevernet being brought up again and again. When in reality, no one disagrees that in some serious cases, children should be taken away and be given another home.
This is being used to overshadow all those children who maybe needed some help, but absolutely not of that kind. Now, they’re being traumatized for life – for absolutely no other good reason than to protect the one who made the wrong decision in the first place. What about all their calls and crying for their true home and parents, without anybody paying attention to it? The brutality of these acts – and the numbers of them – are rarely mentioned. Some lawyers have estimated those cases to represent around 80% of all the children being forcibly displaced.
So, I’m not ready to forgive Barnevernet yet. The snow that fell last year, is still falling down – and nothing seems to change things, as long as we have a trust-based system where the employees from Barnevernet can do what they want. They can command the police to take a child any time. Even if they make a wrong decision, it still can take months and years before the children are returned to their family – if ever.
Instead of forgiveness, I have a Christmas wish. I wish that people would open their eyes to what’s happening. The actions of the Norwegian Barnevernet will forever be remembered by the rest of the world, as our acts, my acts. Every Norwegian should understand how easily one can lose a child to the Norwegian state – and try to care a little bit about how they want this country to be.
This is my Christmas wish, so that I might regain some pride in my country. All the time since the 17th of May celebration last year, I have only been ashamed. During the celebration at our school, my daughter told me the news about the girl in her class being removed. I went to look for the mother in the crowd, while two girls talked in the microphone of how lucky we are in Norway. “Not many countries have as fair and humane laws as Norway,” they said. But I know of no country where the mother has less of a right to express love and to care for what comes from her own womb.
I have a life which the immigrant woman would have done anything to get: I’ll celebrate Christmas, happy to be with my children. As it is for any other parent, there have been incidents or errors that could have separated us forever, had they been judged by the wrong person.
But my red-coloured tablecloth, delicious food, my decorations and Christmas-red curtains can’t match the memory of the pale red shoes in the home of a woman who is not taking part in our celebration. The red shoes will always be lying there, in my consciousness, empty of children’s feet.
Editor commentary and request:
The true author of this true account is pictured here. I would like to thank Ragna Heffermehl for sharing this important story with the world. I would also like to thank Professor Marianne H. Skånland for supporting Ragna’s efforts to have this excellent piece shared with as many people as possible. When I think of the great gift of salvation that God has gifted to man this Christmas, I will think of how His Holy Spirit uses people. I will think of Norwegians like Ragna and Marianne.
I think that Professor Skånland has a wonderful thought: “If any of your readers would like to send a Christmas greeting to this Iraqi lady, they could send it to you and you could forward it to Ragna, who will print it out and give it to this mother.”
Is there a better gift than words of encouragement and offers of prayer for a mother who has had all of her children taken from her? I rarely ask for comments and I am making an exception in this post. Please comment here and share your thoughts with this mother who will, once again, be spending Christmas alone. I will make sure they get forwarded along.
Thanks to my Romanian/American brother in Christ, Octavian Curpas, the English version has also been published in at least three other locations:
A great message from one of the greatest Christian communicators of the last few centuries.
This isn’t the clearest picture of the man. You can find hundreds of better ones on the internet. Mr. Spurgeon’s words are the focus here. I hope these words bless and instruct you as they have me.
It is, once again, time to share information about worldwide human rights abuses. Back in April, I shared this video featuring children wearing shirts naming real abused Norwegian children. The song was written and performed by Cristian Cazacu. He explains the purpose of the song in a video below.
A modern worldwide movement has begun. The epicenter is the country of Norway.
Norway’s CPS, called the Barnevernet, has such an atrocious record when it comes to separating children from biological parents for little or no reason that cities all over the world held demonstrations earlier this year. Hot Springs, Arkansas was one of those cities. The demonstrations in Norway continue and the issue has made many aware of similar problems in other countries. There has been good news and bad news in Norway since this video was made.
The Good News
A few high profile cases have been won in court, not a common thing in Norway. The people of Norway are becoming more aware of the internal problems and, despite a great amount of pressure, the numbers of protesters is growing.
The Bad News
It appears that new laws are being discussed that will increase the powers of an already frightening and disastrous system. Norwegians continue to be intimidated and scared by a government “Child Protection” service that appears to fear nothing, even condemnation by international human rights groups.
Recently, a local state legislator whom I know discovered a similar problem with Arkansas’ DCFS. Evidence has surfaced in a local case that information was “covered up.” Unlike Norwegian politicians, my local State Senator is confronting the issue.
In a recent FB post, my State Senator wrote:
“The legislature passed laws dictating that DCFS and juvenile courts first try to place children with relatives before foster care. Some DCFS employees and some judges are reluctant to follow that law. They fear that a relative that has not been vetted “might” harm the child. That is a legitimate fear. But why is that more of a fear than that a foster parent may hurt a child? And how about the proven trauma to children when they are completely separated from their entire family and support network?”
He also pointed out how a mother from Los Angeles, California won $3,000,000 in a lawsuit and that similar lawsuits will be started in Arkansas if necessary. The Californian mother’s child had been taken for no good reason like so many cases in Norway.
The Norwegian Barnevernet seldom tries to place children with relatives. In cases that I am aware of, children are split up and never see their siblings again until they are 18 or older. The Barnevernet is not afraid of lawsuits because it has abused its power in many cases over many years without repercussion.
What can be done?
Like my State Senator, Norwegian politicians have to become concerned. My State Senator became concerned because of his Christian convictions and his decency as a human being. Norwegian politicians must know of this problem as their country has become the focus of worldwide attention.
I have tried to remember to contact the Norwegian Prime Minister every so often via her Facebook page. I will try and do this every other day, expressing my concerns, from this day forward. Her name is Ms. Erna Solberg and you can get to her facebook page by clicking HERE.
A Facebook friend of mine has created an excellent blog site with information about how you can contact important authorities in Norway. If enough of us make comments, along with pressure from within Norway, maybe Norwegian leaders will see that a change cannot be avoided.
Here is the website and a big thank you to Mike Snow who has rightly pointed out that, “A few people contacting politicians are only looked at as a nuisance. A thousand people posting and emailing information to them would feel like a Tsunami!”
At this site, you can click on a link to Solveig Horne’s (Minister of Children and Equality, Barnevernet head) Facebook Page.
You can also get to it by clicking HERE.
Together, we can make a difference.
“An Armenian- Russian painter captured waves on his canvases like none other. These depictions of powerful, translucent waves are beautiful and terrifying at the same time, and the ships in distress add poignancy to the paintings of Ivan Konstantinovich Aivazovsky. See some of them here at MyModernMet.com
“The ships caught in the terrible storms the artist depicted reminded me of the Navy hymn, Eternal Father Strong to Save. What a metaphor these scenes are for our country right now, and how appropriate the hymn. We are in deep peril. America, a country that has been a rich recipient of grace and favor from Divine hands, has mocked God for too long. The results all around us, as we can see, are catastrophic. Those who put their trust in God alone will find refuge from the storm. There is no other safe place.”
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah. There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High.
God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her, and that right early.The heathen raged, the kingdoms were moved: he uttered his voice, the earth melted. The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah. Come, behold the works of the Lord, what desolations he hath made in the earth.9 He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; he breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear in sunder; he burneth the chariot in the fire.
Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth. The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge
This is a wonderful compilation by Ingrid Schlueter at a time in our history when Christians need these powerful words from Psalm 46. What a blessing it is to know that He is our refuge and strength!