Call of Hope: Ministering to Muslims through National Workers

IMG_2305.jpeg

Today, all across the Islamic world, God is using a seemingly unlikely group of people to reach Muslims with the Gospel message. 

From the remote villages of Nigeria, to the islands of Indonesia, to the arid Middle East and beyond; Former Muslims are reaching their neighbors with the message of Christ! Below you can read a the recent article with Mission Network News on how Call of Hope is making a difference in the Muslim World through national workers.  

 

International (MNN) — Countless ministries all over the world are working in volatile areas with people groups that are indifferent or even hostile to the Gospel. That’s why it’s no small feat when Ron Chiricosta says Call Of Hope“astounded” him with their methods.
“Call Of Hope works with over 200 former Muslims, Muslim-background believers, and they are the ones who actually carry out the work of Call Of Hope in over 27 nations,” says Chiricosta, now Call Of Hope’s Executive Director.
Why is that important? Chiricosta says it’s because Call Of Hope only uses national workers in all 27 countries. They don’t send people; they work with indigenous people living in the areas they want to reach.
IMG_2443.jpeg

 

Call Of Hope focuses on reaching the Muslim population of the nations in which they’re operating. Workers use media resources like radio programs, websites, specialized literature, social media, and more to build relationships with Muslims looking for answers.
“That whole relational aspect is so crucial to what we do,” Chiricosta says. “After people respond, and they respond in various ways, through letters, texts, phone calls, we begin the process of meeting people where they are.”
As Call Of Hope workers build relationships with indigenous Muslims, they can connect them with a wide network of house churches. Though they’re “not in the business of planting churches where churches aren’t needed,” they’re still willing to establish new house churches if there are none in the area so no potential believer will have to leave their questions unanswered.
And Chiricosta predicts plenty of questions since the love that can be found in Christ is a foreign concept to many Muslims.
“Allah is not a god of love, and that is not an idea that they know a lot about,” Chiricosta says. “When we say ‘we would like to help you in one way or another,’ when we reach out to people, when we show them kindness and love, it speaks volumes. It bowls them over.”
One of Call Of Hope’s practical ways to show love comes through a goat giveaway in Ghana and Nigeria. Chiricosta says the project opens doors into deeper conversations with local Muslims who are startled by the open arms of believers willing to share the Gospel.
Many of Call Of Hope’s 200 national workers are facing dangerous, volatile situations, and they need all the support they can get. Though Chiricosta says he will never turn away a gift, “Dare I say it, I’d rather someone pray without giving than give without praying”.
“As I think about the people that we have working in the different countries, the overwhelming thing that they say to me is ‘please have people pray for our work and for our people’,” Chiricosta says.
“The focus of Call of Hope is to reach out to Muslims, and thank the Lord that when we reach out to Muslims, people are getting saved, people are coming to Christ!”
But that also means people coming into persecution. Pray for Christians working with Syrian refugees in Lebanon and Jordan, believers facing banishment in Northern Sudan, and refugees fleeing the atrocities of Boko Haram terrorists in Nigeria.
“Pray for boldness that they will continue sharing Christ,” Chiricosta asks.

Refugee Finds Help in an Unlikely Place!

IMG_3833.jpg

Mahmoud, a refugee, enters a butcher shop in Lebanon to purchase meat with the last of his money. What happened next he never would have imagined!

Mahmoud lives in the Bekaa Valley, an area now covered with thousands of tents to house impoverished refugees. They have come over from Syria to escape the war, and most have struggled to find adequate food and shelter.

"What can I get you?" the butcher asked Mahmoud. He explained to the butcher that he only had 2,000 Lebanese Pounds to his name (a little more than 1 Dollar). Mahmoud motioned to the scraps of the cow, something you would only use to make animal feed. 

The butcher could tell that Mahmoud was a refugee and he asked him: "Why would you use the last of your money to buy food for an animal?"

Mahmoud couldn't hold it together any longer. He began to weep as he explained that the food was not for an animal, but for his wife and seven children. His family had lost everything in Syria. They hadn't had a filling meal in months and Mahmoud was desperate to provide anything to fill their stomachs.

The butcher was shocked. He paused for a moment and remembered the day that a Call of Hope Frontline Worker gave so freely to him. He remembered how he received food and shelter in a time of need. Most importantly he remembered how Frontline Workers had shared Christ with him, and the sacrifice that Jesus made on the cross for him. The butcher himself was of very little means, but he couldn't imagine sending Mahmoud away with the animal feed.

Without another second of hesitation, the butcher reached out of his own pocket to buy Muhammed several pounds of the best chicken he had! 

As a result of this act of generosity, Mahmoud was not only able to feed his family, but now they are all regularly attending services at the church planted by Call of Hope. Today they are hungry, not for food, but for God's word. They eagerly ask questions about Jesus and they want to know more about the God in heaven who loves them!

IMG_0551.jpg


Here is how you can pray:
 

  • Please pray for Mahmoud's family as they grow in their faith in Christ.
  • Pray that God would protect and care for refugee families in Lebanon as they face brutal winters without adequate shelter.
  • Pray for financial provision so that our frontline workers in Lebanon can provide food, clothing, and warmth to more refugee families this winter!


P.S. You can be the answer to our prayers. If you want to help Mahmoud's family and other refugees, you can give a gift below!

IMG-20150115-WA0055.jpg

Widow and Children Find Christ as Refugees

IMG_E9434_preview.jpeg

A mother and her two children sat outside a destroyed home in Bagdad. The pile of ruins was the only thing left of their former home. Alone and afraid, this refugee family was looking for anyone who would help them!

"We are Shia Muslims. My husband was killed in Mosul by ISIS soldiers. We lost everything." the mother explained to our Frontline Worker in Iraq. "Is there anything you can do to help us?"

In this instance, we were able to provide food, clothing, and shelter to ease their burden and show the love of Christ. The widowed mother was filled with intense gratitude but she was baffled by this act of kindness.

"Why would you help us? No one helped us, not even Shias, just you Christians" she explained. Call of Hope workers knew that this was a great opportunity to share the Gospel. He read 1 John 4:8 with the woman and she was overcome with joy. "I want to learn more about this Jesus who gives love so freely."

Today she is coming to church regularly and her children attend Sunday school where they are able to be counseled through their traumatic experiences. 

On the embattled streets of the Iraqi capital, there are many women and Children in similar situations. Unfortunately, aid from large organizations ends up in the hands of men, and women and children are often neglected.

For this reason, Call of Hope Workers in Iraq are ministering specifically to women and children. In addition to food, clothing, and shelter; we have partnered with doctors in the area to ensure that these women and children are receiving the medical care that they need. Our ultimate goal is that refugees would come to know the great physician, Jesus, who can give them eternal healing and relief from pain!

This Christmas, Frontline Workers in Iraq are excited to be organizing a Christmas celebration for over 100 refugee children! For some, this will be the first time that they ever hear about the gift of Jesus coming to the world. Please keep these families in your prayers this Christmas season! 

Here is how you can pray:

 

  • Please pray that the hearts of refugee children and their parents would be open to the Gospel message.
  • Please pray that God would protect and care for refugee families in Iraq this winter.
  • Pray for financial provision so that our frontline workers in Iraq can minister to more women and children this Christmas and into the New Year!


P.S. If you want to be the answer to a child's prayer, click below to give to an Iraqi refugee family.

What is the most important gift you could give this Christmas?

Imagine if you could receive a Christmas card from every life that has been touched by your gift to Call of Hope.


In Ghana, Musah was desperately poor but he received a Goat that allowed him to go to school. In India, a sewing machine helped Wasima start her own tailoring company. On the border of Syria, thousands have been given food and shelter thanks to your contributions. 
These stories don't just end with a handout and a pat on the back.

Our frontline workers are building meaningful relationships with Muslims so that they can come into a saving relationship with Jesus. 

This #GIVINGTUESDAY, The Christmas of Hope Gift Catalog gives you the opportunity to meet both an immediate physical need and the eternal need of salvation for a persecuted Christian or a Muslim interested in Christ. 

Click below to see all the ways that you can make an impact this Christmas season.

A Muslim Scholar Comes to Christ

ZIAD.jpg

Frontline workers have demonstrated time and again, that with God, all things are possible.

When Muslims come to faith in Christ through the ministry of Call of Hope, it's not uncommon for these former Muslims to be harassed by their Islamic teachers. However, sometimes these Islamic teachers actually come to faith in Christ themselves! That is the case of Ahmed*, a teacher of Islam who became a Christian as a refugee in Lebanon.

Ahmed is originally from Syria. like many, he was forced to relocate due to the war. He and his wife and three children found their way first to Saudi Arabia, and then to the refugee camps in Lebanon where his life would change forever! Ahmed's brother Omar had come to faith in Christ through the ministry of Call of Hope, and he consistently shared his faith with Ahmed. After many conversations and many prayers, Ahmed trusted Christ as his savior, and began to learn and grow, as he attended a church in the refugee camp where he lived. He was very intent on pursuing his faith and he often shared the Gospel with his neighbors and his family.

As you might suspect, those around Ahmed were not very accepting of his new-found faith in Christ. 

When his wife heard that he had become a Christian, she left immediately and sought a divorce. A week or so later, she returned and tried to work it out, but only if Ahmed would agree to renounce his faith and return to Islam. Every day she would threaten to take the children and leave him.

Things became very difficult and she began to threaten their young children. "If your father does not change, I am going to take you away from him." The constant threatening and turmoil were greatly affecting Ahmed's youngest daughter, Mariam. She actually enjoyed going to church with her father and hearing stories about Jesus. Sadly, this caused her mother to despise her. Although she was only 9 years old, she had to hold the burden of life as a refugee, as well as the threats of her mother on a daily basis. It became so hard for her that she had threatened to take her own life!

One day Ahmed was volunteering at the church Christmas celebration at the Call of Hope Center in the Bekaa Valley when he received a call with news no parent should ever hear. The hospital informed him that his daughter Mariam had hanged herself and had passed away at the hospital shortly after. The police investigated the matter and were not able to confirm with certainty if it was a suicide or if Ahmed's wife had been involved. 

After the incident, Ahmed'swife fled in the middle of the night to Syria with their two remaining children. She was stopped at the border and although she was allowed to proceed, they would not permit her children to go with her into Syria.

Today, Ahmed has been reunited with his children. Despite the terrible tragedy in his life, he continues to share the Gospel and proclaim the name of Jesus! As he continues to work through his grief, he has found joy in serving others and learning more about Christ. In his church home, the congregation has helped him look after his children, and have provided counseling for them. Call of Hope Frontline Workers have also come alongside him to counsel him through this tragedy and to provide friendship and hope. 

God is doing the seemingly impossible in the lives of Ahmed and his children. Despite the unspeakable tragedy, today, you can find them experiencing the joy of knowing Jesus!

Here's how you can pray:

  • Pray for Ahmed's continued safety, and pray that his testimony would be used to bring many in the refugee camps to Christ. Pray also that healing would continue in his Ahmed's heart, and those of his children
  • Pray for the safety of Frontline Workers and Christian converts in Lebanon.
  • Pray for finances that will resource Frontline Workers to reach more desperate refugees like Ahmed.

*Names are changed to protect the identity of Christian converts.

Urgent Need for Children’s Bibles After Terrorist Attacks

As a parent, you do everything possible to keep your children healthy, safe, and happy. Sometimes it can be challenging! Imagine trying to raise a child in northern Nigeria where poverty and Muslim extremism are a part of everyday life. 

Attacks from Boko Haram, a violent Islamic terrorist group, have killed 17,000 people, left 2 million homeless, and forced over a million children out of school. In this pivotal time in Nigeria’s history, Call of Hope's Frontline Workers are responding to the terror of Boko Haram with the love of Jesus!

 

Boko Haram Targets Schools

 Nigeria's militant Islamist group Boko Haram is fighting to overthrow the government and create an Islamic state through a wave of bombings, assassinations and abductions. 

Nigeria's militant Islamist group Boko Haram is fighting to overthrow the government and create an Islamic state through a wave of bombings, assassinations and abductions. 

Boko Haram targets marketplaces, churches, and even schools. Due to this ongoing threat; more than a million children have been unable to attend school and continue their education.  As a result, many of northern Nigeria’s children are illiterate!

In villages where churches have been destroyed and Bibles have been burned to ashes; Call of Hope is responding to help children and their families with emergency supplies and so much more!

 

 Portions of burnt Bibles left behind after a Book-Haram terror attack on a school in Northern Nigeria.

Portions of burnt Bibles left behind after a Book-Haram terror attack on a school in Northern Nigeria.

Education Continues Through Call of Hope

Despite Boko Haram’s efforts to destroy the future of Nigeria’s children, Call of Hope is providing Bibles and hymnals for children, as well as establishing schools with teachers and appropriate learning materials, so that children are able to continue their education.

In these schools, Muslim and Christian children alike are learning to read their first sentences using Bible stories! This show of love and concern during a time of heartbreak and hurt has many Muslim’s looking for hope, and children and their parents are asking questions! That is why Frontline Workers also give out evangelistic booklets written to specifically address questions Muslims have about Jesus Christ and Christianity.

 Frontline Workers in Nigeria are able to replace burnt Children's Bibles and evangelistic school booklets used to teach students.

Frontline Workers in Nigeria are able to replace burnt Children's Bibles and evangelistic school booklets used to teach students.

Lives Are Being Changed

IMG_0196.jpg

The children who attend these schools are often traumatized. They have seen parents and friends killed by Boko Haram; their villages and possessions have been destroyed; many have fled to makeshift refugee camps where survival is a daily struggle.

At first, the children attending the Call of Hope schools in Nigeria come filled with bitterness and hatred. When our frontline worker asked them “What do you want to be when you grow up?” many of them said, “We want to become soldiers, because we want to take vengeance for the murder of our parents.”

Over time, however, as the children learn from the Bible and are healed by God's love, they learn to forgive and love their enemies despite all of the terrible things that have happened.

The Work Has Just Begun

IMG_2077.jpg

Call of Hope schools in Nigeria are proving to be an effective way to reach out to Muslims with the love of God while strengthening our Christian brothers and sisters.  But the work is only beginning. Currently, there are children who have been out of school for nearly 5 years, a situation that we would all like to change. To make this a reality, Frontline Workers are asking for us to provide teaching materials, Bibles, and evangelistic literature. For as little as $10 you can play a big part in shaping the immediate, and eternal future of an entire generation of precious Nigerian children who have suffered so much.

12 year old girl escapes violent terror attack!

During this time of year many of our children are enjoy life in the sun during their summer break. However, for children in Nigeria, there are no schools to return to and many have lost their immediate family members due to the horrific violence of terrorism. The attacks from Boko Haram, a violent Islamic militant group, have killed 17,000 people, left 2 million homeless, and forced over a million children out of school.

The danger of Boko Haram is particularly bad in the Borno region of Northern Nigeria, where many former schools have been converted into dilapidated refugee camps. Every day, survivors of terror attacks face horrific conditions as they grieve for their lost loved ones, while they fight to stay alive themselves.

That is why Call of Hope is there, helping victims of terror by providing food, blankets, water, and other supplies. In addition to aid, Call of Hope’s frontline workers have come along side the people of Northern Nigeria, providing friendship, love, and most importantly the message of the Gospel. 

Kaye, a COH frontline worker, has recently connected with a 12-year-old refugee girl named Ravi, during a quiet night in the camp. Ravi told Kaye her story: 

One night in my village, my family and I were eating our evening meal when we heard the sound of gunshots. They seemed to be getting closer, and then I saw a bullet go right through the fence next to our home. My father yelled us to get down to avoid gunfire! The first chance we had, we made a run from the house and hid in the bushes nearby. From the trees at the edge of the village we watched as Boko Haram fighters shot many people and then burned our church and other nearby homes. Just when we thought the men would go away, they approached our home and we watched as they burned it to the ground.

Once the fighters had cleared out, we ran and helped our wounded neighbors. Many had been shot and snakes had bitten others as they hid in the bushes, but thankfully everyone survived. The next morning my family and I, along with many others from my village, walked for 5 1/2 hours to get to a refugee camp where we hoped to find food and shelter.

Ravi’s story is like many in Northern Nigeria, she has been displaced, has not been able to attend school, and struggles to find adequate food and water. With your help, we will be able to show the love of Jesus by providing care, comfort, and the message of the Gospel to Ravi, and those like her, this year.

Would you prayerfully consider giving a gift of $10, $20, $50, or $100 dollars to help children like Ravi? Your gift at this pivotal time is a chance to change a life forever!

Syrian Fighter Finds Peace in Jesus

Abed, a young Muslim man, stands in the center of a refugee camp in Jordan. As he looks around at the endless rows of makeshift tents that he and his neighbors now call home, he tries to recall how he got to this moment. 

Abed grew up as a Sunni Muslim. Like many others, he was taught he was doing his duty as a Muslim when he was fighting in the Syrian war. As the war raged on, he could never quite understand how two groups of Muslims (Sunni versus Shia) could be killing each other in the name of Allah. For the first time, he began to question what he had learned his whole life. As the war became more intense, Abed witnessed repeated attacks on women and children; and he knew he couldn’t participate in these terrible acts of violence. He laid down his weapons and fled to Jordan in search of answers. 

Since everything he had was destroyed in the war, Abed took shelter in a nearby mosque. When other Muslims realized that he was having doubts about Islam, he was thrown out. Alone and afraid, Abed's only option was to scavenge through the garbage to avoid starvation. One day, he heard that food and shelter were being offered at the Call of Hope Center in Jordan. 

Even though Abed originally came for physical help, he received that and something far more valuable. He was astonished to hear about a God who loved and cared for his people. Intrigued by this concept, he asked to talk with a Frontline Worker. 

Abed explained, “In Syria, they taught us how to fight, but you Christians taught me that Jesus has never carried a sword or did violence to anyone. He did the opposite, Jesus healed the sick and taught to love your enemies.” With tears in his eyes, he continued, “All my life I have had anxiety and questions, but now after hearing about Jesus, I am overwhelmed with a feeling of peace”. 

After talking and receiving counseling from the Bible, Abed came to embrace Jesus as his Savior and Lord.  Now, as he looks out into the refugee camps, he stands there on a mission to tell his refugee neighbors about the hope that he has found in Christ!

Frontline Workers earnestly ask for your prayers. Sign up below to become a prayer partner today!

What is a Frontline Worker?

Today, all across the Islamic world, God is using a seemingly unlikely group of people to reach Muslims with the Gospel message. 

From the remote villages of Nigeria, to the islands of Indonesia, to the arid Middle East and beyond; Former Muslims are reaching their neighbors with the message of Christ! 
The entire ministry of Call of Hope has been built on the courageous and passionate service of these “Frontline Workers". They brave separation from families, extreme persecution, and even death, to return to their people and boldly proclaim the hope that is found in Christ!

YOU CAN PLAY A LARGE AND VITAL PART IN WHAT GOD IS DOING TO BRING LOST MUSLIMS TO HIMSELF IN THE ISLAMIC WORLD. BY HELPING TO SPONSOR A FRONTLINE WORKER FOR $29, YOU CAN MAKE A BIG IMPACT TODAY

Former Muslims are Reaching their Neighbors with the Gospel

Call of Hope Frontline workers hold a training conference for pastors in Africa.

"The man who formerly persecuted us is now preaching the faith he once tried to destroy." Galatians 1:23

The apostle Paul is one of the most influential figures of the Bible and he himself authored much of The New Testament. Before he was an Apostle, Paul (then named Saul), was famous for persecuting Christians and opposition to the teachings of Christ. But after a life-changing encounter with Jesus, God used Paul in remarkable ways to spread the Gospel.

Today, God is using a seemingly unlikely group of people to take The Gospel into the world of Islam – former Muslims. Over 200 of these indigenous Muslim background believers, all theologically trained, and all leaders in their ministries and communities carry out the work of Call of Hope. Christians who have come out of the Muslim world are uniquely positioned to share Christ with their neighbors for the following reasons:

 Call of Hope frontline workers focus on forming authentic relationships with their Muslim neighbors. In Morocco, many men and women have come to know Christ through relational evangelism.   

Call of Hope frontline workers focus on forming authentic relationships with their Muslim neighbors. In Morocco, many men and women have come to know Christ through relational evangelism.

 

LANGUAGE

Muslims live all around the world. From the remote villages of Kenya, to the islands of Indonesia, to the Middle East, speaking the heart language of the land is a critical part of evangelism. Language however, is only a small portion of the cultural makeup of a given area.

CULTURE AND CUSTOMS

Anybody who has spent time traveling can tell you the importance of understanding cultural differences. Of course from the United States to the Middle East, there are many differences; but what may be more surprising are the differences between certain Muslim denominations who reside in close proximity to each other. A believer in Christ who is from a Muslim background, who has grown up in the Muslim community has a perspective that few others will have, a perspective that makes a valuable difference when reaching others with the message of Christ.

All throughout the world, many Muslims are searching to answers to life's tough question. Frontline workers are coming along side these men and women with a message of hope in Christ.

 

SECURITY REASONS

The frontlines of Muslim evangelism are dangerous and potentially life threatening. In fact, much of the work of Call of Hope is not spoken about publicly due to the security risk that it would pose to those who are in the mission field. Frontline workers know the danger they are in, yet despite the peril, they are compelled with the love of Christ to share the Gospel with their Muslim neighbors.

PERSONAL TESTIMONY

The Bible tells us that we can overcome with “the word of our testimony”, and this is clearly seen on the frontlines of Muslim evangelism. Many Muslims are searching for answers to life’s most difficult questions, and hearing a personal testimony from a former Muslim has proven to be an effective ministry tool. In a world where Muslim converts face persecution from friends and family, hearing the personal account of the grace and love of the one true God is powerful.

Call of Hope's Frontline Workers

From the Middle East to Africa to Southeast Asia and Europe, Call of Hope’s Frontline Workers are serving tirelessly to proclaim the Gospel through a variety of creative and innovative means.  This includes literature production and distribution in the heart language of the people, indigenous radio broadcasts, internet resources designed specifically for Muslim seekers, relational evangelism, planting house churches, and providing life sustaining aid. The passion of the Frontline Workers is to bring the Good News of Jesus Christ to Muslims seekers desperate for a message of life, hope, and assurance!

With a foundation of prayer and giving by supporters all over the world, the ministry of Call of Hope has been built on the courageous and passionate labor of these mighty servants of God. They brave separation from family, extreme persecution, and even death, to reach out to their people and boldly proclaim the name of Jesus Christ!

Only through prayer and financial partnership can frontline workers continue the work that God has called them to, please keep these faithful servants in your prayers and consider giving a gift today!

 

The Sewing Center: Equipping Young Women with Valuable Trade Skills and The Message of Christ

As the sun beats down on a blisteringly hot day, who in the world would be outside covered head-to-toe in all black? The answer…millions of women in India. 

You see, India is home to more Muslims than any other country besides Indonesia. In both Indian culture and the religion of Islam, life for women is extremely difficult.  

According to the World Economic Forum (WEF), opportunity for women is more difficult than anywhere else in the world on some counts. When it comes to female economic participation, India is ranked 134 out of 136 countries. As you might imagine, the situation for Muslim women is even more dire.

Some areas of India are nearly 100% Muslim and many have not even heard the name of Jesus! In these locations, Call of Hope frontline workers have a practical ministry that is equipping young women with a valuable trade skill, and presenting the love and message of Christ.

The Sewing Center

up_india_map.gif

In the Uttar Pradesh region, frontline workers have started a vocational training school to teach women how to sew. As they go through the curriculum, these young ladies learn the basics of operating a small tailoring businesses. In addition to learning a practical skill to support themselves and their families; these Muslim women are also hearing stories from the Bible and most importantly, the saving message of Christ. Recently about 50 women from Muslim families graduated from the sewing center! As diplomas were handed out, several of the girls were given a chance to share their testimonies, sing worship songs, recite their favorite Bible verse and more. All of this, in a part of the city that is nearly 100% Muslim.

A Muslim Girl Becomes a Christian Businesswoman

The sewing center facility is rented from a devout Muslim man within the village. When the man learned that the building was being used not only to teach sewing, but to teach the Bible – he was furious! In fact, the landlord’s very own daughter, Faitima, was attending the sewing school! His initial reaction was to terminate the lease contract and shut down the school, but he noticed such a dramatic change in his daughter's life, that he hesitated.

Not only did Fatima become remarkably proficient with her sewing skills, she was also strikingly more joyful at home. She would often come home singing songs about Jesus and she boldly told her parents that after reading the Bible she had become a Christian! Although her father was angry about Fatima new faith in Christ, he was so astounded with her transformation in attitude, that he has begun to accepted it. Despite her father’s wishes for her to remain quite about her faith, Fatima cannot help but talk about the love of Christ!

Fatima is just one of many who have come to faith in Christ in the training school. As the young women begin to operate their own businesses, many have become testimonies of the love and faithfulness of God! Through the sewing center in India, and through the power of the Gospel, Muslim women are being mobilized and empowered to learn a trade and acquire the ability to care for their families. They have become a shining light for Christ, in the midst of the darkness of Islam. 

How can you be a part of this life-changing project?

For just $36 you can sponsor a student from enrollment to graduation at our sewing school. Over the 6-month curriculum, you’re giving them more than just the chance to learn a sewing skill; you’re giving freedom from economic limitations, and eternal freedom in Christ. Imagine the lasting impact you can have on the life of a young girl for just $36.

Will you partner with us to empower women in India’s society and share the message of Christ to the Muslim world? Click GIVE NOW and enter the code word “INDIASEWING” to become a part of this life changing project.

Small scale models of clothing articles hang on the wall to give sewing students an example to follow. 

Give once, or partner with us to support this project monthly!

Frontline workers desperately need your prayer, sign up to become a prayer partner today.

 

 

How Should Christians Respond to the Refugee Crisis?

Since 2011, more than 6 million Syrian refugees have been displaced and are facing hunger and hardship. In the midst of a controversial travel ban in the U.S. many are asking the question: what is the best way for us to help Syrian refugees? As Christians, you and I cannot simply turn a blind eye to this heartbreak… but identifying the most effective way to respond to the refugee crisis has been difficult!

The Trouble with Sending Aid to Refugee Camps

Because of the danger involved in reaching out to a war torn area many charities have struggled to effectively give aid to those in desperate need.

The BBC has reported that “Food has increasingly been used as a weapon, with aid often diverted onto black markets or into government-approved areas.”  For Christian organizations, there is even more trouble because of the extreme hatred toward believers by many in the refugee camps, especially in areas with known ties to terrorism. With nowhere for refugees to go and very limited ways for them to receive aid, how can we show the love of Christ to those who are desperate and hurting?

Finding the Right Approach

In order to truly reach refugees with lifesaving aid and the Gospel message, we need to rethink the approach. Call of Hope has been working in refugee camps since the beginning of the crisis in 2011, but unlike traditional mission organizations that send individuals from the US, Call of Hope works directly with highly trained nationals who carry out the work in their respective countries.

 Refugees receive food and aid parcels from at the Call of Hope Center in Lebanon 

Refugees receive food and aid parcels from at the Call of Hope Center in Lebanon 

Today, more than 200 theologically trained former Muslims are reaching the world of Islam with the hope that is found only in Jesus. In Lebanon, where nearly 2 million refugees have settled, Call of Hope frontline workers are operating a school for the blind and disabled, and planting churches in the heart of the refugee camps.

But how can we preach the Gospel message without working to improve the situation of those who are in desperate need? That is why we also provide food parcels, blankets, fuel for diesel heaters, and other necessities. By working with indigenous co-workers, we have been able to overcome hurdles that have plagued many organizations and ensure that aid is given to those who need it most.

A Testimony of God’s Faithfulness in the Refugee Camps

Providing aid is only the beginning, an effective door that opens hearts to the Gospel! For Asil, one refugee woman in Lebanon, the hope she found in Christ, was worth the pain of life as a refugee.

Before the war, Asil lived a comfortable life with her husband and 4 beautiful children in a happy home in Syria. Fleeing for their lives, Asil and her family escaped to the Bekaa Valley of Lebanon where they faced below freezing winters, and inadequate food and only makeshift tents for shelter.

Asil went from a Muslim refugee to a witness for Christ right within the refugee camps

One day Asil heard that Call of Hope was offering food and assistance to those in need – desperate and looking for any help she could get, she began to visit the Call of Hope center. Asil heard the preaching of a frontline worker and was overwhelmed with curiosity about Jesus. After several months of counseling from Call of Hope workers, she received Jesus as her savior and she has since become an eager witness, leading her friends and family in the refugee camp to Christ.

Even in the midst of intense persecution and the tragedy of life as a refugee, Asil still says “I am thankful for the war in Syria, because without it, I would never have known the love of Jesus.”

Through the work of frontline workers in refugee camps, we have seen former terrorists come to Christ and many have received lifesaving aid and hope in a time of true desperation.

 

How Can You Help a Refugee Family?

Half of those affected by the war in Syria are children.

There may be a temporary ban on immigrants from some Muslim nations, but there isn’t a ban on helping refugees.

Our frontline workers in the refugee camps ask sincerely for our prayers. Additionally, with a small gift of $26 you can be a part of the solution by helping to feed, clothe, and minister to a family of 4 in the refugee camps of Lebanon for a whole month.

100% of all donations are tax deductible and go directly to a refugee family in need.  Will you be a part of the solution today?

5 Things Every Christian Needs to Know About Muslims

 Bedouin Muslim's in North Africa kneel in the desert.

Bedouin Muslim's in North Africa kneel in the desert.

Almost a quarter of the people on earth identify themselves with the religion of Islam. It is the second largest religion and growing. As Christians, it is essential that we understand how to engage and share the love of Christ with the Muslim world. With this in mind, here are 5 basic things every Christian should know about Muslims.

1. Muslims are more widespread than you may think.

            According to the Pew Research Center, Islam is the 2nd largest religion (behind Christianity) making up 23.2% of the global population. Geographically, Muslims are concentrated in East and Southeast Asia, where 62% of all Muslims are located. Many Muslims also live in the Middle East and North Africa (20%) and sub-Saharan Africa (16%).             

2. “Muslim” and “Arab” do not refer to the same thing.

            The term’s “Muslim” and “Arab” are often confused and are mistakenly used interchangeably, but it is important to know the distinction. A Muslim refers to an individual who practices the religion of Islam, whereas an Arab refers to an ethno-geographical people group originating from the Arabian region within the Middle East.

            Although Islam did originate in the Middle East, Arabs ascribe to numerous different religions. Likewise, a person who is a Muslim can be of any nationality or ethnic decent.

3. There are two major groups of Muslims: Sunni and Shiites.

            Islam is divided into two major denominations, known as the Sunnis and the Shias (or Shiites) The overwhelming majority (87-90%) of Muslims are Sunnis; about 10-13% are Shia Muslims. Geographically, the Shia Muslims are concentrated in areas such as Iran, Azerbaijan and Lebanon, and Iraq.

            The major difference between the two denominations originates from whom they believe to be the successor of the prophet Muhammad, the founder of Islam. Over time the distinction between the two groups has grown to include theological disagreements and differences in religious practices.

4. Muslims believe that Jesus was a great prophet.

            Many would be surprised to know that Islamic teachings in the Quran have a lot of positive things to say about Jesus. Muslims credit Jesus with many miracles including the virgin birth and His ascension into heaven.

            However, the teachings in the Quran deny the deity of Jesus and it teaches that He was only a man and a good prophet.  Consequently, Muslims deny that He is the Son of God and the Savior of the world.

5. Muslims need salvation through Jesus Christ.

            For many Christians it can be difficult to look upon Muslims with the love of Christ. This is especially true in a day and age where radical Muslim groups are persecuting and killing Christians around the world. It is important to remember that the Bible says the Lord is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9). Consider the story of Paul in the Bible, a man who was known for persecuting Christians but after a life-changing encounter with Jesus, he became one of the greatest evangelists of the faith.

            As Call of Hope works to share the message of the Gospel we have seen similar transformations around the world as more and more Muslims are experiencing a loving relationship with Jesus Christ. Many of these former Muslims risk death and persecution every day because of their faith; they are ostracized from their families and society, yet they continue to proclaim the love and Good News of Jesus Christ. God works through former Muslims in a unique way, but we all have a part to play in God’s plan to bring Gods love and salvation to the Muslim world.

A Muslim Woman’s Curiosity Leads Her to Christ

EFFIA comes to christ

In the remote villages of Northern Ghana, even a small group of Christians can make a remarkable difference! Effia*, a young Muslim woman grew up despising the minority of Christians that lived in her predominantly Muslim village. Despite her hatred toward them, she could not help but notice the love that Christians showed to each other; if one of the Christian farmers were sick, another would tend to their crops until they were healthy. What surprised Effia even further was the love that Christians showed to other Muslims and they way that they tried to live at peace with everyone.

As she left her village to attend secondary school, Effia met one of Call of Hope’s frontline workers and asked for a New Testament Bible. After sometime, Effia came to faith in Jesus and today she is able to receive counseling and guidance from Call of Hope’s team in Ghana. Deciding to follow Christ is not an easy decision to make when you are from a predominantly Muslim community and there is often intense backlash of persecution from other Muslims.

Effia's ‘funeral‘

After Effia made a decision to follow Christ, her parents and Muslim family were shocked. “How could someone who once hated Christians now be a Christian?” they wondered. Since she made the decision to become a Christian, she is considered dead to her family. Most would consider that to be a figure of speech, but Effia's family took measures one-step further by actually conducting a funeral with an empty grave. Even though she may be dead to her family, today Effie is alive in Christ and she is growing in the faith. Despite ridicule and shame from her family, Effia knew that there was know going back after experiencing the love of Jesus.

Please pray for Effia as she continues to encounter many trials, and please also remember the nation of Ghana as we are trusting in God to see more Muslims come to faith in Jesus. 

Floods in Sudan destroy thousand of homes, dozens killed

Floods in Sudan have destroyed thousands of homes.

Heavy rainfall in Sudan has continued since last Wednesday in the Khartoum area of Sudan causing the destruction of thousands of homes in the region. Largely unreported by the media, tens of thousands of people remain displaced by the floods without access to shelter, food, and other necessities. 

Call of Hope has been working to spread the Gospel to the people of Sudan for over 40 years, and today they are in desperate need of our help. Call of Hope frontline workers are responding to this crisis by offering:

  • Blankets, tents, and shelter for families
  • Food parcels
  • Medicine and basic health assistance
  • A team of volunteers to distribute aid and assist flood victims
  • Prayer, trauma counseling, and the Gospel message

Call of Hope frontline workers are currently on the ground responding to both Christian and Non-Christian families who are in need of your prayers and support. With your help, we can physically assist flood victims, strengthen the body of local believers, and share the empowering message of the Gospel to Muslims. 

 

Would you give a gift today to partner with us in helping those who are displaced and in desperate need of our help?

Many Sudanese live in mud huts. After heavy flooding, thousands of these families have been displaced as their homes and possessions have been entirely washed away. 

How Farmers in Africa are Planting Seeds of Salvation

call of hope us

Although the Gospel message and God’s Word itself is unchanging, the presentation of the Good News is often adapted for each group that is receiving it. In Ghana, Nigeria, and Kenya, God gave Call of Hope a culturally appropriate method to connect with the people - Farmer Evangelism. Due to the rich agricultural area that makes up much of the land of these countries, most of the villagers have become farmers to feed and support their families.

call of hope

Call of Hope Farmer Evangelists are trained in effective small-scale agricultural production, which they use to assist their neighbors and eventually start conversations about Jesus. The evangelists begin by planting crops on a leased plot of land, as the crops begin to grow, nearby villagers take notice and want to know how to improve their own farm productivity, beginning a conversation. Curiosity about farming methods and fertilizer leads to relational evangelism and the presentation of the Gospel message to Muslim farmers. When enough people in a village have come to faith in Christ, a church is established, believers are nourished in the Word of God, and are able to have fellowship one with another.

The Farmer Evangelist project has been remarkably successful. Many churches have been planted and more than 80 farmer evangelists have been placed in villages across the region! As the Gospel message continues to spread and seeking Muslims are coming to faith in Christ, Call of Hope has made discipleship training a priority. Every two months, the farmer evangelists gather for a time of encouragement and training in the Word of God. Despite strong opposition, the Good News of Jesus Christ is setting free villagers who were once bound by the chains of Islam.