By Stephen R. Lewis, Associate Director of Global Strategy
Terror has swamped the news this weekend, with major attacks in Beirut, Lebanon, and Paris, France, on Thursday and Friday. Pray for the people of Beirut and Paris, who are wrestling with life and death and uncertainty. Pray also for the Church of God in the region, and the Global Strategy personnel on the Three Worlds team, that they might be a beacon of light and hope.
On Thursday evening, suicide bombers blew themselves up at a bus stop in a suburb of Beirut, Lebanon, killing at least 43 people and injuring more than 200. Bordering Syria as it does, the country of Lebanon is physically on the front lines of the struggles in Syria and Iraq. The Church of God has a long history and a significant presence in Lebanon. To the best of our knowledge, these congregations have not been affected in this attack. Pray for the church and for peace in this city that has been torn again and again by fighting and terror.
The attacks in Paris, France, on Friday evening that left more than 120 people dead at more than six sites across the city also weigh on our hearts and minds. While Paris has a long history of attacks, this is the deadliest since World War II. The Church of God has one congregation in Paris. It is a thriving French- and Arabic-speaking congregation, with many members from across the Middle East and North Africa. To the best of our knowledge, none of them have been harmed in these attacks. Pray for the city of Paris and its residents as they face the realities and aftermath of the attack. Pray for the unity of this city and its multiethnic people.
Pray for the church across the region of Europe and the Middle East as it meets this weekend. Pray that the light and hope of Christ will shine brightly and clearly from them to their neighbors.
And pray for the safety and peace of our Global Strategy personnel working on the Three Worlds team in Europe and the Middle East. We are grateful that they are all safe, none of them having been traveling in Paris or Beirut this week.