Ken & Betty Frank - Turkey Too often religions divide and separate people rather than bring them together. Yet water, in the form of a well or a spring, has a way of bringing people together...Read more
The group is studying at the Lancaster Theological Seminary, which is related to the United Church of Christ.Read more
Why learn about Islam? Frank, Ken & Betty - Turkey After 9/11, many people suddenly said, "I've got to learn about Islam." What were their reasons? Are Christians under any obligation to learn about Islam?Read more
How do you show God’s love to a person of another faith tradition? We, Ken and Betty Frank, are missionaries in Turkey. Most Turkish people are Muslims. Converting Muslims to Christianity is not our goal. We spend much of our time here working with people who run secular schools and a hospital. Yet as we work together people sometimes ask us to pray for them. If a person is going through a difficult time we often tell them we will keep them in our thoughts and prayers. We have never known this to give offence. In fact it is usually met with deep gratitude. It is a sure way to reach across faith traditions here in Turkey.Read more
Imagine yourself as a migrant – perhaps a 30-year-old woman with a child who finds herself in a huge city like Istanbul. She has no family, money, passport, work, food, healthcare or schooling for her child. She came to Istanbul from an even worse situation and has no intention of going back. She probably did not know she would end up in Istanbul. She paid money to a trafficker who promised to take her to a country in Europe or North America but who dumped her in Istanbul. It will take a long time and a lot more money for her to get to Europe or North America, if she ever gets there…….…….Read more
Alison J Stendahl
Global Ministries’ missionary serving in Istanbul, Turkey
READ: Acts 10: 34-35
Twenty-four years ago God called me to Turkey to serve as a teacher and school administrator. Today I work in a school community that is predominantly Muslim with a small Christian and Jewish minority. Yet we make no distinctions. We look to God together in times of trial and in times of joy. We pray for one another. We collect money for those in need. We visit the sick together. We attend one another’s weddings, dedications, and funerals. No judgment. No prerequisites. No membership. What holds us together is that we love God, have a healthy respect for God’s sovereignty, and honor God by our actions. Here I am part of small, Christian minority, yet I am valued for who I am.
We’d like to report that we’ve witnessed a resurrection, a return to life. It’s an institution that lives again: the Gaziantep American Hospital in southeast Turkey. Many of us thought it was dead, but it is rising to a wonderful new life of medical services for the people of southeast Turkey.
Too often religions divide and separate people rather than bring them together. Yet water, in the form of a well or a spring, has a way of bringing people together. When Abraham sent his servant went to Abraham’s homeland to find a wife for his son Isaac, he found Rebekah at the well or spring (Gen. 24:13ff). Jesus met the Samaritan woman also at a well or spring (John 4:14) and asked her for a drink. This surprised her. The Bible tells us that Jews did not share things in common with Samaritans Yet we all need water no matter what our religion, tribe or nation. In Turkey sacred springs are called ayazma. These are often ancient places – going back before Christianity or Islam. Perhaps they were once the shrine of a mother goddess. The ayazma waters are clean and sometimes believed to be able to cure sickness. In Turkey churches and mosques are often built in places where there is an ayazma. Ken and Betty Frank, missionaries in Turkey, are inspired by such places because people from different religious traditions go to these places, whether churches or mosques, for a drink of clean and curative water, and to ask God for help. Women especially seem to go to an ayazma. An especially famous one is “Mary’s House” near Ephesus. One guide for showing God’s love to a person of another religious tradition is to find something in common. Water is a wonderful commonalityRead more
Hatay is the modern Turkish name for the ancient city of Antioch (Antakya). It lies on the Orontes River not far from the eastern Mediterranean coast. Historically home to a sizable Jewish community at the beginning of the Christian era, Antioch is significant to Christians as being the location where Peter traditionally established a church and where the followers of Christ were first called Christians (Acts 11:26)Read more