stories from the field

Ministering to Syrian Refugees

Victims of the fighting in Syria are fleeing extreme violence and destruction, leaving behind their lives, friends, and possessions. Over 4 million refugees have left Syria at present and more are leaving every day. Migrants desperately cross the Mediterranean from North Africa in hopes of reaching Italy or Spain. Others are being smuggled into Europe through Turkey and Greece. All over the world, people and nations are struggling to cope with the millions who have been displaced by war.

Many of these victims have experienced severe trauma – whether through violence, poor living conditions, persistent stress, or loss of friends and family. Whatever the circumstance, Pioneers is committed to engaging the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of victims of war. Pioneers Canada has missionaries on the ground in this conflicted region, working on Pioneers field teams with fellow missionaries from around the world to meet refugee needs through several high-impact ministries:

  1. Women & Children’s Trauma Counseling – A safe place where women and children can express themselves, receive counseling for traumatic events, and and hope.
  2. Children’s Sports Program – A sports ministry where children can go to escape the pressures of daily refugee life and simply “be kids.”
  3. Arabic Media Outreach – Through tailored media content from our Arabic-language outreach website, we offer messages of hope and Jesus’ love to victims of war in the Arab world.
  4. Learning Centre – Refugee children gain the opportunity to have some continuity in their lives by attending classes to learn Arabic, math, and other subjects.
  5. Developing Refugee Ministries – Pioneers has teams in strategic areas like Greece, Turkey, and Hungary that are working to meet imminent and specific refugee needs.
  6. Mobilizing New Missionaries – We are actively seeking new long term missionaries who are called to minister directly to these refugees in this crucial time.

A Pioneers Canada missionary on the front lines of this crisis wrote, ‘We have witnessed the arrival of refugees fleeing Syria because of ISIS. They are both Christians and Muslims. ‘Abu Mohammed’ fled his small village when ISIS demanded that they commit to a more strict Islamic law, die, or leave. With great sadness in his eyes he told us, “I have seen what my Muslim brothers are doing to each other. What is this faith? There must be more, where is the God of peace?” ’

Please pray for these refugees, that we will be able to a meet the real needs of real families whose lives have been ravaged by war and violence. Pray that they would know the true way of Peace through Jesus.

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