While Syria remains in disarray and many of its people
displaced, some not certain from where their next meal is coming,
local churches are joining together to meet basic needs.
Within Syria itself, 5.5 million people are displaced, and
80,000 have been killed within the last two years, about half of
whom were civilians. An estimated 25 percent of the population has
fled the country to Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon with no
But as Jack Shiflett of the Association of Baptists for World Evangelism
reports, those individuals are not completely without hope.
"Basically, our partners on the ground there and the groups that
we are facilitating are giving food, mattresses, shelter, cooking
stoves, blankets -- basic needs just to survive," he details.
And those resources are going to people regardless of whether they
are Christian or Muslim. Shiflett recently returned from the region
and tells OneNewsNow one of the things that tugs at his heart is
that local churches are the ones responding.
"For example, you may have a local church that's 50 or 70 people,
and they're working and supporting 800 refugees," the ministry
spokesman relays. "And what makes that remarkable is that these are
their natural enemies."
But Shiflett has observed firsthand the Spirit of God working in
Christians as they show mercy and minister to all.
"Church attendance has quadrupled, and not just from people who
are receiving aid," he accounts. "These are people who are no
longer receiving aid, so it's a powerful testimony to the living
Meanwhile, many Christian pastors in Syria are staying in the
country and urging other believers to do the same.
A Baptist organization is looking for missionaries to make an
impact on South Sudan.