SANTA ANA, Calif. (Sept. 10, 2013) – Open Doors USA is calling for urgent prayers this week as U.S. leaders meet to talk about a possible attack to punish Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad for allegedly using chemical weapons in the ongoing civil war.
Open Doors USA President/CEO President David Curry states: “Hidden in the noise of the current political environment is still an unrepresented issue in Syria – the intentional and systematic persecution of Christians. We are calling Christians on all sides of the political debate to dedicate themselves to prayer for our fellow believers who are targeted for their faith.
“They’ve done nothing wrong….only being bold enough to associate themselves as Jesus followers. Please pray earnestly for protection of their lives, families, businesses and freedoms. Without the support of Christians in the West these believers face even more danger; thousands are already refugees, prisoners, homeless and victims of kidnappings due to this systematic persecution. With the growing marginalization of Christian faith around the world, it is imperative that we unite in prayer.”
A few prayer requests from churches inside Syria include:
Counseling for children who have been traumatized by violence
Support for almost one-third of the Syrian population who are either refugees outside the country or homeless inside Syria
Christians be a salt and light in their community even as civil war rages
Food, medicines and other relief materials get to those most in need
Prayer requests from outside the country of Syria:
Wisdom for U.S. political leaders debating whether to launch an attack
Also wisdom in decision-making for leaders from countries such as Iran and Russia
Jihadists from other countries will not continue to stream into Syria and spread even more havoc and violence
On the ground in Syria, Open Doors, working with church partners, is helping facilitate food supplies, personal hygiene products, medical assistance/medicines and financial support by paying the rent of apartments for temporary shelter for the homeless. The Displaced Peoples Project also is targeting other countries. Worldwide, thousands of Christians are being forced to leave their original family homes and villages due to persecution and ravages of war.
Syria is ranked No. 11 on the Open Doors 2013 World Watch List of the worst persecutors of Christians. Christians comprise roughly 10 percent of Syria’s population of 23 million. The civil war has resulted in an estimated 100,000 deaths and two million displaced people.
For almost 60 years Open Doors has worked in the world’s most oppressive and restrictive countries, strengthening Christians to stand strong in the face of persecution and equipping them to shine Christ’s light in these places. Open Doors empowers persecuted Christians by supplying Bibles and Christian literature, training Christian leaders, facilitating social/economic projects and uniting believers in the West in prayer for Christians, who are the most persecuted religious group in the world and are oppressed in at least 60 countries. To partner with Open Doors USA, call toll free at 888-5-BIBLE-5 (888-524-2535) or go to our website at www.OpenDoorsUSA.org.
(For more information or to set up an interview, contact Open Doors USA Media Relations Director Jerry Dykstra at [email protected] or call 616-915-4117).