YES! We Will Have a Christmas Program in Syria This Year
Christmas for Refugees in four different locations: Planning is in the final stages for Christmas for Refugees programs in Syria. In all this year, about 1,000 children will have a full Christmas program with a hot meal and gifts. The children are not officially refugees but are what is referred to as “displaced persons.” A “displaced person” is a person who is still in their native country but has been forced out of their home by war.
There are no large “refugee camps” in Syria for Christians forced from their home towns. Most have moved to other areas of Syria and are in an urban setting.
For the most part, we will reach those children through churches in Syria. The churches have the best knowledge of the families who have fled and who are in most need of assistance.
There is progress for Christians in Syria, as Sunni Muslim groups are defeated by government forces. A sign of progress was the opening of the main museum in Damascus the last week of October.
Churches dating back to the time of the Apostles Peter and Paul are also bringing back priceless artifacts that were hidden and buried. Most importantly, Christians who had fled threatened towns are returning and reestablishing their communities.
Churches welcome the Christmas program we offer because the returning families need help, having found their homes and places of work looted and heavily damaged by the occupying Sunni Muslim forces that wanted to establish Sharia law in Syria based on the Quran.
We will hold a Christmas event for 200 children in [su_highlight background=”#010101″]Jaramana [/su_highlight]. This is a large city that is mostly Christian. It was never occupied, but churches and church schools there were constant targets of fire by rebels who held areas near the city until this year. A final dramatic push by the Syrian army cleared that area just a few months ago and once again Christians can head to church without fear.
Just north of the border with Lebanon, we will hold Christmas events in three different locations. One is [su_highlight background=”#010101″]Wadi al-Nasara[/su_highlight] , our Christmas dinner and celebration there will be for 100 children. Nearby is [su_highlight background=”#010101″]Safita[/su_highlight] . In that town, we will hold three separate events, one for 225 children and two with 100 children each. The last Christmas celebration will be held at [su_highlight background=”#010101″]Homs Baptist Church[/su_highlight] , for 250 children.
These displaced and threatened Christian families and their children need our help — they need hope. There is a lot to the story of the plight of Christians in Syria that Americans have never heard.
The Christmas for Refugees programs are about hope and that is why we will offer the programs in areas of Syria that have been recently liberated from radical Sunni Muslim groups. Almost every child in Syria is traumatized but the Christian children, in my opinion, have suffered the most.
Many of the fathers of these Christian children have served in the Syrian army for more than seven years without much of a break, as hundreds of thousands of Sunni Muslims from all over the world made their way to Syria to fight jihad and establish an Islamic Caliphate (a pure Sharia government based only on the Quran). Russia estimates that 84,000 foreign Sunni fighters have been killed just since they entered the war. In addition, tens of thousands more Sunni Muslim fighters died in the areas of Syria occupied by the United States.
Because of the death toll in Syria, many of the children we will celebrate Christmas with are without fathers.
Please pray for the Christians of Syria who still carry heavy burdens from the years of war and please pray for our Lebanese ministry workers who will travel to Syria to administer the Christmas for Refugees programs for displaced and threatened children there.