Why focus on Christians in the Middle East?
‘Walking and Praying with Christians of the Middle East’. The Christian churches of the Middle East are facing a crisis unparalleled in recent history. As a result of a set of complex religious and political factors, the number of Christians in the region has fallen dramatically as many have sought refuge in other parts of the world, especially the West. However these are ancient communities that trace their origins back to the very beginnings of Christianity. The present conflicts and political instabilities in countries such as Egypt, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Israel and the Palestinian Territories have had a profound impact upon these Christian communities. Many Church leaders in the region believe that without a Christian presence, the future of the Middle East looks bleak indeed. Yet at the same time knowledge in the Western churches of these Christian communities remains minimal and often we are unaware of who Middle Eastern Christians are and what issues they face in today’s world. In popular perceptions of the Middle East, Arab equals Muslim and rarely Christian. Our knowledge of our Christian sisters and brothers in the region is an important factor in their survival. During this season of Lent Churches Together in Britian and Ireland are inviting us to join with us in walking with them and to pray for and with them. Lent is a crucial time to remember the lands in which Christianity has its roots – Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Israel, Palestine and above all Jerusalem are names that remind us of crucial events in the Bible, but also names that dominate our news today. For the Lent study resource, go to the CTBI website. A series of talks will take place in local churches from 25 February to 25 March. For more details see the green footer below.