Christian Aid Helping Syrian Refugees in North Lebanon

November 8, 2011

Indigenous missionaries here in northern Lebanon are asking for emergency help to feed and care for hundreds of Syrian refugees who have fled the terror and violence across the border in Syria. About 6000 refugees have streamed out of Syria so far in what amounts to a “secret exodus” – and the Christian community here is being pressed to give shelter and emergency aid.

Indigenous Christian leaders are asking Christian Aid Mission in Charlottesville, Virginia for help to feed, house and provide emergency relief – especially to the Christians among the refugees. “Almost daily we are getting requests for help,” says a Christian Aid staff member.

In order to stem the flow, Syria is planting land mines to cripple civilians who are trying to escape. There have been raids across the border from Syria to kidnap some of those who have made their way to freedom. Arrests are being made daily among the undocumented refugees but neither government is publicly acknowledging the problem.

Local believers are providing both for the spiritual and physical needs of the refugees, with small group Bible studies, cassette tapes and Arabic language Bibles. Native missionaries say they first noticed the increasing numbers of refugees in June, 2011. There are about 1600 Syrian families estimated to be living in North Lebanon now.

“We are not prepared to help these people,” says a local missionary leader, “but we cannot keep our doors closed when we see our brothers and sisters in need – whether they are from Christian or Muslim background.”

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