WHO IS THE LEADER OF SYRIA?
President Bashar al-Assad is the leader of Syria.
HOW MANY CHRISTIANS LIVE IN SYRIA?
814,000 Christians live in Syria. They make up 4.5 per cent of the total population of 18.3 million.
WHY ARE CHRISTIANS PERSECUTED IN SYRIA?
As the conflict in Syria continues, Islamic extremists still have control over areas of Syria. Anyone who doesn’t conform to their extreme brand of Islam is a target to these groups.
WHAT IS LIFE LIKE FOR CHRISTIANS IN SYRIA?
In areas controlled by Islamic extremists, Christians are forced to pay protection money, must follow a strict dress code and dietary rules, and cannot express their faith publicly.
In other areas of Syria, the leaders of historical churches are targets for abduction – they are very recognisable because of their clothes. Christians are sometimes kidnapped for ransom.
Believers from Muslim backgrounds face pressure from their families, as leaving Islam is seen as a huge source of shame.
Despite the challenges they face, Christians in Syria are shining as a light in the darkness of war. Open Doors local church partners are providing vital aid for 12,000 vulnerable families.
When life was at its hardest in Syria, your giving meant Open Doors was able to provide essential support to more than 2,800 Syrian families. Pastor Abdalla stayed with them. Now that people are returning and rebuilding their lives, businesses and communities, Abdalla still helps. His church is a Centre of Hope, restoring independent futures for Syrians.
"When we give a loaf of bread, the love of Christ is written on it."
- Ghassan, church leader
HOW CAN I HELP CHRISTIANS IN SYRIA?
You can give to provide vital support
Open Doors works through local partners and churches to support Christians in Iraq through Bible distribution, training, crisis relief and practical support for displaced believers.
A gift of £65 could go towards providing training and a loan, so that someone can open a small business to support their family and community.*
*The total cost of this training and loan is £452 per person
You can tell others
The story of Ghassan, a church leader who has chosen to stay in Syria and serve his community through years of war, is included in our free Can you believe it? pack. Order yours and inspire your church or small group with stories of faith, hope and love.
You can pray
Brother Andrew, the founder of Open Doors, says, “Our prayers can go where we cannot... There are no borders, no prison walls, no doors that are closed to us when we pray.”
A PRAYER FOR SYRIA
Heavenly Father, we ask for Your peace in Syria. Bring an end to war and violence there, that Your people may flourish. Be with all those who have no place to call home. Strengthen Your church, our family, that they may continue to bring Your hope to their communities.