As next week marks the end of five years of conflict in Syria, key Christian agencies are calling on American Christians to unite in prayer on behalf of Syrian refugees.
Organizations representing a diversity of Christian practice and tradition are participating in a prayer campaign called #prayforrefugees, which aims to unite Christians around central beliefs about refugees rather than focusing on areas of disagreement that can derail efforts to respond biblically to refugees’ needs.
“American Christians are a diverse community. We don’t agree about everything. And the Syrian crisis involves complicated and controversial issues,” said Rich Stearns, president of World Vision. “But as Christians, we can all affirm the beliefs that each human being is created and loved by God; that we are commanded to serve the suffering, and in fact, we are to find Christ himself in those who are hurting the most.”
“While we may not all agree on the best political or logistical solution, any Christian can pray for peace in Syria; for protection and relief for those who are innocently caught in the crossfire; and for those serving the hurting,” said Stephan Bauman, president of World Relief.
"As Christians, we are called to be on mission with Christ. Our mission field encompasses the most vulnerable among us including those fleeing from persecution and warfare. We should pray for gospel compassion for our neighbors who are in peril,” said Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.
The #PrayForRefugees campaign began Ash Wednesday and continues through Easter Sunday for those who practice Lent, but will equip prayer events nationwide on and around the 5th anniversary of the Syrian conflict on March 15.
Prayer resources can be found at prayforrefugees.com and via Twitter at #prayforrefugees
The Syrian refugee crisis is the worst refugee crisis of since World War II. More than 13.5 million Syrians are in need of humanitarian assistance. More than 4 million have fled the country and are living as refugees in Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq, European countries and around the world.
Participating agencies include the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good, We Welcome Refugees, World Relief, World Vision, the Justice Conference, the International Mission Board, Lutheran World Relief, the United Methodist Committee on Relief, Catholic Relief Services, the Adventist Development and Relief Agency, PrayerMate, and the GC2 Summit.
For more information, visit http://www.prayforrefugees.com/about/
Courtesy: World Vision
Photo courtesy: Thinkstockphotos.com
Publication date: March 11, 2016