Syria (MNN) ¯ The civil war in Syria continues to claim lives. More than 30,000 have already died in the conflict. Now, with the rule of law unbridled, innocent Christians are becoming victims as radicals take advantage of the situation.
The Middle East Director of Christian Aid Mission says marauding bands of militants are responsible. "They're not necessarily Syrians, but they're very radical Muslims, and their goal is to eradicate Christians. They believe it's an abomination to have Christians within Syria."
We are not identifying this director for security reasons, but he tells us a Christian Aid-supported worker was a victim. "There was a band of militia that came through and told all of the people to get out; then, they went ahead and killed the pastor and his family. So there [are] quite a few now--I think there are 11 [Christians]--who have been killed in that one area from that ministry that we help."
Why has the rule of law disappeared from Syria? The director says, "All of the typical security that you would have in the country is trying to protect the country. They're not worried about providing police protection for the little communities around, and so the people are all vulnerable."
That's forcing many Syrians to flee into Lebanon, Jordan, and Turkey. The ministry directory is particularly concerned about 32 Christian families who escaped this recent violence, who are frightened for their lives. "The goal is to try to get them out. Once they get into Lebanon, because they're close to the border of Lebanon, then they need to be taken care of." Funding is need to help these believers.
The ministry director says non-Christians are also in need. Christian Aid-supported churches are reaching out with food, shelter, clothing, and the Gospel. "They've had many, many Muslims who have become Christians and there's still an opportunity to give out Gospel DVDs and New Testaments to the refugees. There's great openness among those people."
Support is also needed for to support Christian schools that have been established for the children of refugee families.
Prayer is also important: not just for the victims, but for those responsible. "You look at the Apostle Paul: he was the worst of sinners and was a persecutor of the church. And God reached his heart! We need to be praying for these radicals that God would touch their hearts and that they would come to know Christ."
To support Christian Aid Mission's refugee outreach program or their refugee school ministry, click here.