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Picking Strawberries

It is just a detail, not at all the main point. But I appreciate that sportwriter Ian Herbert, in his narrative of Russia while covering the World Cup, included an encounter with two strawberry pickers, who are of the same faith as me. This means that I would call them my 'sisters' and I included am saddened at what they are being put through.

It is just a chance encounter for Mr. Herbert. He writes: 

Two women, Anastasia and Elena, who approach in the sunshine of Samara's beautiful Volga embankment to say 'you are English?' turn out to be Jehovah's Witnesses.They talk about their lives. It transpires that mine is far easier than theirs. Russia and North Korea are the only two countries on earth where Jehovah's Witnesses are outlawed. Human Rights Watch reports that one Russian in their number faces a 10-year jail term, as a member of an 'extremist organisation'

Reports are that many members are being sacked from their employment, which will drive more of them to pick strawberries

Defending Jehovah’s Witnesses with style from attacks... in Russia, with the book ‘I Don’t Know Why We Persecute Jehovah’s Witnesses—Searching for the Why’ (free).... and in the West, with the book, 'In the Last of the Last Days: Faith in the Age of Dysfunction'


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