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We encourage you to consider a Vision Trip that would enable you, your pastoral or organization leadership, local civic group or church missions team to better understand the scope, dynamics, and needs of Christian engagement in this region. The invitation is for you to come and learn, with a posture of receiving and gaining instead of doing or serving.
You will come away from a Vision Trip to our partners in Lebanon with a clearer, more complex understanding of the value of the Middle East/North Africa (MENA) and Lebanese contexts, an understanding of the full scope of the Lebanese Baptist Society’s (LSESD) complement of ministries, and having explored opportunities for involvement in Lebanon and the MENA region.
Do you already love the Middle East and North Africa region, and want to learn more? Are you up for a challenge? Whatever life-stage you find yourself in, perhaps it’s time to head back to the classroom! The Institute for Middle East Studies at the Arab Baptist Theological Seminary offers you the opportunity to pursue a Master of Religion degree in Middle Eastern and North African studies. Apart from two rewarding, two-week trips to Lebanon each year, you can earn this degree from a distance. The opportunity is also available to study Arabic through the Academy of Languages and Practical Skills, by traveling to Beirut for intensives or even over Skype! Contact us to inquire more about ways to further equip yourself to serve or advocate for the MENA region.
Equip Your Kids
Your kids can pray for kids in the MENA region:
- The children of Arab Baptist Theological Seminary (ABTS) students who come to Lebanon from all over the Arab World. They face challenges like going to a new school where their classes are in new languages, and eating different kinds of food that they aren’t used to. Pray for them to feel comfortable while they live with their parents in Lebanon.
- Children who live at an orphanage and are getting to begin school for the first time in their lives, this year! They don’t know about how to learn in a classroom yet. Pray for God to help them love their new opportunity to learn, and adjust quickly.
- Children from Syria and Iraq who have moved to Lebanon with their families because the war got too close to their home towns. Some of these children still feel afraid and have nightmares because of the war. Pray for God to give them peace and comfort them!
Your kids can cultivate generosity and encourage kids in Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq:
- If your son or daughter creates a card for a child in Lebanon, Syria, or Iraq, send it to the MEBO office in Atlanta and it will be delivered as an encouragement to refugee or stateless children. (Please send only cards. MEBO cannot facilitate a pen-pal type relationship or arrange for a card to be sent back to your child.)
- Your daughter or son might choose to support ministry to children in Lebanon by asking for donations in lieu of birthday gifts, running a lemonade stand, or raising funds in another fun and creative way.
Your kids can grow in their understanding of the Church in the MENA region:
- Some of the oldest Christian groups in the whole world are found in the Middle East! Girls & boys have loved and followed Jesus in places like Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and Egypt for 2,000 years!
- If you visit a church in the Middle East/North Africa region, it might be different than the kind of church you are used to. It might be decorated in a different way, and the songs might sound different. The Bibles people read from, and the sermons they listen to, might be in Arabic, or even in Syriac (which is a form of the language that Jesus spoke, Aramaic!). The pastor’s clothes might look different than your pastor’s clothes. But do you know what would be the same? The people in those churches love Jesus, and want to worship and obey Him just like you!
- Christians are a small group in the Middle East and North Africa, but they have been there ever since the time of Christ, and have had a big influence on the history of the region! Even though they are a minority, they want to be able to stay and live in their homelands. Sometimes it is hard to be a Christian in that part of the world. But you know what? Many times, Christians are good friends with people from other religions, like Islam. Throughout history, there have been many times that Christians and Muslims have lived happily and peacefully together, side by side. Many Muslims and Christians want to keep having unity and friendship as they live together in the MENA region.