We praise God for the fact that despite all the hardships and obstacles that we are experiencing our vision and passion to serve our community do not and will not limit our work and endeavors to be a blessing and a true help. The Syrian conflict began in March 2011 after government forces cracked down on peaceful protesters during the Arab Spring movement and has now grown into a fullblown civil war. The more the conflict goes on, it looks as if the solution is pushed further and further away and the price to pay for the citizen of this country is getting higher and higher. Can you imagine the trauma everyone in Aleppo is going through on a daily basis? Pray that all these emotional and physical scars will not stop us from rebuilding this home-land of ours!
By November 2013 the Syrian economy had shrunk 35 percent since the start of the conflict. Unemployment had increased fivefold, the value of the Syrian currency decreased, and the public sector had lost 15 billion US dollars. In the midst of this turmoil our Evangelical churches have kept their services intact with schools and health-clinics up and running. We praise God that the Armenian Evangelical Bethel Church continues its Sunday and weekly communal worship and meetings in the following domains: Sunday Worship Service, Sunday School, Youth, Junior High Group, “Armiss” Conservatory, and the Women’s Communal Worship Group.
Considering this inhuman situation in Syria, we are continuing to help our families as well as individuals that are around us in the church and in our institutions by preparing food parcels to them, providing milk for their children, and providing more scholarship aid for the Armenian students, while providing medical assistance for the sick.
With all that is going on the Syrian crisis puts the Christian communities everywhere face-to-face with the threat of extinction. We belong to a small minority, with little in our hands but the best contribution to our country, our Faith and Ourselves. We need to act accordingly, with conviction and courage! Pray with us in faith and hope that the violent conflict comes to end, and reconciliation processes begin. May God remain in us and with us as we in the Armenian Evangelical Church remain His faithful ambassadors of wisdom, knowledge and light in this world.
*Rev. Selimian is President of the Armenian Protestant Community in Syria
The United Church of Christ and Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) continue to offer support for the work of many partners in the region to provide humanitarian response to the needs of Syrian refugees. Please consider supporting the work of Global Ministries' partners' relief efforts in and around Syria. You can do that through One Great Hour of Sharing (UCC), the Week of Compassion (Disciples), or through Global Ministries directly.