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  • The comments and opinions expressed herein on this web site do not necessarily reflect the beliefs and point of view of Lutheran Hour Ministries. Statements are made exclusively by the author and appear as written and have not be subject to the Lutheran Hour Ministries doctrinal review process.

Reaching Out Syrian Refugee Families and Their Children

The MELM team is always glad to serve the Lord among the refugees and their children through many ways especially using visual tools to help them understand how much Jesus loves them and cares for them. MELM prepared a program for refugee kids who are not like other regular school kids, some of them can’t read and the rest can barely read, their homes are now tents in Bikaa valley, tents made from cloth.

The MELM team gathered the refugee children in a large room and showed them the DVD ” Red boots for Christmas” and explained to them through interactive discussion that the love of God was shown through the ultimate gift for us, Jesus Christ. The kids enjoyed the movie a lot and were happy to receive the story book of the movie as Christmas gift so they can enjoy reading it later.

Moreover, we also visited their parents at their tents and distributed about 70 food packages for families in two camps, in addition to providing comforters (bed covers) to each family. These refugee needy families have nothing and stay in tents, that are covered by scrap wood and discarded billboard ads, were thankful and appreciated our missions’ love and care for them.

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Reaching out People through Mobile Messages

“…for I am the LORD, who heals you.” (Exodus 15:26) is the verse we sent by SMS messages to thousands of people, the verse is the title of MELM calendar for the year 2015. Through these mobile messages, we reached thousands of people comforting them from the Word of God, informing them to order the calendar that talks about Jesus the almighty healing the blind man, and purifying us from sins. Jesus came to abolish darkness in our lives and He who believes in Him receives eternal life and lives in the light of Christ.

The calendar also includes Bible correspondence courses enrollment tract, and MELM publications advertisement.

Many People called requesting their gift considering it hope from God. We pray that the Word of God  eases the troubled hearts.

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Reaching Out Arabs and Ethnic Kids

MELM prepared a program for the kids who live in Dora area, the suburbs of Beirut. The kids who attended the program were from different nationalities, Syrians, Iraqis, Koreans and Lebanese. The program included Christian songs, games, and we performed the “The Puzzle Missing Piece” play.  The kids were blessed and touched knowing that Jesus loves them and He is the only one who can fill their hearts with His peace and Joy. Also they were very happy to get a Bible book story “Three Presents for Baby Jesus” as a gift

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Reaching Out to Iraqi Refugees

Overview

Like with the Syrian refugees who fled their country to Lebanon due to civil war, Lebanon has also served as a host country for Christian Iraqi refugees who fled from their war torn country. Under the threat of death or conversion by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), thousands of Christians have fled Iraq over the last several months to Lebanon. There are currently more than 17,000 Iraqi refugees in Lebanon, according to Social Affairs Minister Rashid Derbas. Most of them are seeking to be resettled out of Lebanon, but the process can be very slow and painful.

Their traumatic experience

Very little is known about the Iraqi refugees’ experiences and living conditions in Lebanon. The refugees witnessed or lived through traumatic experiences in Iraq, such as threats to their lives, abduction, killing, destruction and challenging humanitarian conditions. This forced them to flee their homeland to Lebanon leaving all their processions behind.

Current Humanitarian Situation

New research into food insecurity among Iraqi refugees in Lebanon highlights alarming rates of poor nutrition. A survey led by Hala Ghattas of the department of nutrition and food sciences at the American University of Beirut showed that over 40 percent of Iraqi refugee children under the age of 5 have anemia, an iron deficiency that could have major health consequences later.

“High food insecurity, low diet quality and high prevalence of anemia in Iraqi refugees living in Lebanon call for urgent programs to address the food and health situation of this population with restricted rights,” Hala said.

In addition, refugees have to contend with rising rents and expensive health care costs, and much of their income goes to those expenses. “Because of all the expenses the families face, they have to prioritize somewhere,” the authors said.

MELM Responds to their Needs

The Iraqi Christian refugees in Lebanon who live in small poor and unhealthy houses and are scattered in the poor suburbs of Beirut are largely un-noticed and suffer silently. However, MELM observed their needs and prepared holistic support packages for one hundred families and their children.

Each family received 3 kg of rice, 3 kg of wheat groats (bergol), 2 kg of sugar, 2 liters of oil, tomato sauce, 4 potions of pasta, 2 portion of Tuna fish, 2 portions of sardine, 2 portions of cheese, meat cans, Halawa, Foul, beans and salt.

We also provided milk and hygiene materials for children, some of them were in a state of malnutrition. We had a list of 36 children below three years of age who needed support; each package contained milk, diapers, wet wipes and shampoo.

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