A Word from Steve Jones: "Meet the Samras – one Syrian Refugee family resettling in Ottawa because of Refugee Sponsorship by Calvary Baptist (Ottawa)"
Dear pastors, missionaries, chaplains and friends,
Steve Jones here… We’re still hearing news about Syrian refugees being established in Canada and our Fellowship is playing a part. To date our Fellowship has raised $130,500 toward helping Syrian refugees in refugee camps in the Middle East with our partner, Operation Mobilization (OM). There are currently 56 churches in various stages of sponsoring or helping Syrian refugee families.
Michil and Gimma Samra were born and raised in Syria and lived in Aleppo with their sons, Subhy, David and Mark. Michil and Gimma came to Christ years ago and were active members of the Aleppo Alliance Church serving in the Sunday school, children’s camps and leading Bible studies.
With the rising conflict in their homeland, they fled in 2012 and settled in Beirut, Lebanon, a country where currently a third of the residents are refugees. Michel writes of their experiences in Aleppo: “We faced death many times, but God has saved us. Many rockets and bombs were so close to us, but God was providing His protection.”
Once in Lebanon they experienced persecution because they were Syrian Christians. In 2015 they fled to Turkey where a Christian ministry provided them an apartment. However, they had no government protection and no money and returning to Syria would mean arrest and death.
In the summer of 2016 the difficult decision was made for the Samras’ sons to flee to Germany. They found asylum and are assisting churches as they seek to help refugees. In November 2016, Michil and Gimma, knowing very little English, arrived in Canada. Pastor Matt told me
“They are undertaking the difficult challenge of adapting and adjusting to life in Canada with smiles on their faces and incredible, gracious attitudes. We are praying that we can find a way to reunite
their sons with them sometime in the future.”
Would you join me in prayer for our Christian friends in finding favour with the authorities? Pray that Subhy, David and Mark would be able to come to Canada soon. May this dear family remind us all to find ways to comfort the stranger, the oppressed, and the persecuted.
Another Fellowship Church in Thamesford, ON has sought to reach out to refugees. Church planter Shawn Robinson recently Fellowship International Director Dave Marttunen and Fellowship International missionary Bechara Karkafi on a trip to Lebanon. Pastor Shawn saw firsthand the incredible need of the refugees. Once home, he and his congregation hosted an Arabic refugee dinner with families from Ingersoll, Tillsonburg and London in attendance. This young church loved their new neighbours with Pastor Shawn following up with these refugee families.
I was overjoyed to further learn of the commitment of this young church to reach Arabic-speaking people for Christ through their committed support of Bechara and Roula Karkafi, Fellowship International missionaries to Lebanon and the MENA region (Middle East and North Africa).
It was a huge encouragement for me to see a young church get involved in global missions through our Fellowship. God is so good. Please pray for the Karkafis as they continue to build their partnership team.
You can find out more about the Karkafis or donate by clicking >HERE<
Have a blessed week,