The ‘Good News’ in Iraq — Journalist Recounts Rescue of Christian Peacemakers During ‘Shock and Awe’ and Returns Seven Years Later
What happened next — and before, after and even now nearly 10 years later — is the subject of “The Gospel of Rutba: War, Peace and the Good Samaritan Story in Iraq.” The book is published by Orbis Books, the book division of the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers. Veteran journalist Greg Barrett relates the story in parallel time, drawing on interviews, journals and photos while reporting about his own experiences. He returned to Iraq with the group during the chaotic aftermath of the war as they thanked the people who saved their lives.
Along the way, Mr. Barrett draws indelible portraits about the peacemakers, their friends and families. He writes about the soldiers, diplomats and bureaucrats. He also focuses on the Iraqi people, especially the people of Rutba. He offers an intense and unflinching look at what war means on the ground — and also the meaning of peace. The story captures human endurance and the universality of grace.
In the book’s Afterword, Shane Claiborne, one of the rescued peacemakers, an activist and the author of “The Irresistible Revolution” (Zondervan, 2006), writes: “The world has much to learn from Rutba, both her scars and her hope. . . . Now that the war in Iraq is over, history will tell how we remember it. I’m sure there will be all sorts of books on the war . . . But in the end I hope that history will also remember the story of this little town called Rutba.”
Founded during 1970, Orbis Books endeavors to publish works that enlighten the mind, nourish the spirit and challenge the conscience. Orbis seeks to explore the global dimensions of Christian faith and mission, to invite dialogue with diverse cultures and religious traditions, and to serve the cause of reconciliation and peace. Learn more at www.orbisbooks.com/ or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/#!/orbisbooks.
The Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers follow Jesus in serving the poor and others in need in 28 countries that include the U.S. All Catholics are called to mission through baptism and confirmation, and Maryknoll’s mission education outreach in parishes and schools throughout the country engages U.S. Catholics in mission through vocations, prayer, donations and as volunteers. Maryknoll missioners share God’s love and the Gospel in combating poverty, providing healthcare, building communities and promoting human rights. For more information, visit the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers at maryknollsociety.org and follow them on Twitter at twitter.com/MaryknollNews.