It seems that as we are in a golden age for documentaries, with so many good films nudging and jolting us toward greater awareness in our world. Some of them are wonderful explorations of nature or inspirational recollections of those who changed the societies in which they lived or live.
Others are punches to the solar plexus, reminding us that there is chaos and hardship in so many places. There is a doc called Fantassut, or Rain on the Borders, filmed at the Greece’s Idomeni refugee camp, the largest informal refugee camp in Europe. It is described as an unflinching look at the refugee crisis through the eyes of those impacted the most.
The camp is home to 11,000 thousands refugees from Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq and other countries have journeyed to Europe in hopes of a better life in one of the EU countries. These people are captives in the camp, which is surrounded by a double barbed wire fence and life is hard.
The refugees get a rude awakening when they discover that the borders of many countries have been closed and that they must survive in the limbo of a tent city with little medical assistance. As Breivan, a mother of five young children points out, the small tents must serve as their bedrooms, kitchens and bathrooms. If living in such cramped and unsanitary conditions were not tough enough, there is also the fact that the majority of the individuals are dealing with the trauma of the war back home. The stench of dead bodies and the sounds of bombs going off are not things one easily forgets; this is especially true for the children.
Perhaps I'll have the opportunity to see this film, if I can muster up the courage. What I know is that a wonderful group of concerned individuals, most from churches and other communities of faith, have brought 23 Syrian refugees, 12 of them children and youth, to the city of Belleville. Knowing what they have lived through it is the right choice, and the Godly choice.