ICC Note: A Turkish ministry director has explained the situation faced by many Christian converts in Turkey, specifically those living as refugees. Worship and expression of faith are done in total secrecy for fear of reprisal attacks from extremists who have migrated to the nation from war torn areas. While there is great joy in knowing that refugees are coming to Christ, there is also great concern for their new circumstances as believers in these areas.
09/16/2016 Turkey (Christian Times): For most Christians, going to Church to attend services, praying with a congregation and reading the Holy Bible in public seem to be normal things. In Turkey, however, new Christian believers cannot openly do these things, due to fear of reprisal in the Muslim-dominated nation.
In an interview with The Christian Post, a Turkish ministry director, who requested anonymity due to security reasons, shared the situation in refugee camps in his country, which hosts as many as 3 million Syrian refugees.
Claiming that Islam is “not a religion of tolerance and love,” the ministry director said some refugees who converted to Christianity are facing challenges in practicing their faith, fearing they will be perceived as infidels.
“They have to hide it from others and live their religion secretly,” he told The Christian Post.
He added that Christian refugees in Turkey should prepare for negative treatment, but assured that all challenges to their faith will pass, as promised by Jesus Christ himself to His followers during His ministry on earth.
On a positive note, the ministry director, who is working with Christian Aid Mission, also shared that more and more Muslim refugees are becoming open to Christian groups who come to their camps to give them help.