Fredericton-area pastor flying to Brussels to help victims of terror attacks
Published Sunday, March 27, 2016 6:57PM ADT
Last Updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 7:03PM ADT
A Maritime pastor is flying to Brussels on Easter Monday to assist victims of the recent terror attack.
Pastor Steve Ranni of Lincoln Baptist Church says he received the call from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association Wednesday afternoon.
"You don't get a call like that very often, so right away, I thought, ‘This is a God moment,’” said Ranni.
Ranni is joining other pastors from Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. He says he was a bit shocked, as the association deploys teams to areas hit by crisis, and likely has a list of hundreds to choose from.
"They asked me if I would like to deploy to Brussels with them with a team of nine, of international chaplains," said Ranni. "We're going to go over, try to pray with folks, connecting with local churches over there and we're hoping to do exactly that – to share with them that there is hope."
The back-to-back bombings in Brussels on Tuesday have eyes from all over the world focused onand praying for the western European city.
The Brussels airport and subway were targeted by suicide bombers, killing at least 31 people and injuring some 270.
Flights in and out of the Brussels airport are not scheduled to resume until Tuesday. Ranni leaves Monday night, but his team does have a plan if they can't make it into Brussels.
"If it's not open when we get on our plane, our plane may be redirected to either Amsterdam or Paris, where we'll take a train into Brussels."
Ranni is humble on why he was chosen for this mission, but the Cape Breton man has an 18-year career with the Canadian Forces.
He's spent time working with Nato in Bosnia, and feels there's a reason why he was called.
"You're going somewhere where you don't know what to expect, you don't know who you're going to encounter, you don't know what's really going to happen. But there's a phrase we use in Christian circles, is that we don't know what tomorrow holds, but we know who holds our tomorrows," said Ranni.
Ranni will be in Brussels for 11 days.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Laura Brown.