Iraq (MNN) ― The International Mission Board marks two tragic anniversaries this week.
On March 15, 2004, anonymous gunmen attacked five Southern Baptist mission workers near Mosul. Larry and Jean Elliott, David McDonnall and Karen Watson died. Carrie McDonnall continues to recover from multiple wounds.
The group was in Mosul trying to help the Kurds in Iraq rebuild their lives, gain access to clean water and discover that God deeply loves them.
Meanwhile, on March 16, 1988, more than 5,000 people died in a chemical attack by Saddam Hussein's regime, also in northern Iraq.
The connection is the Kurdish people. They are the world's largest people group without their own homeland. A type of 'diaspora', 30 million Kurds live in Iraq, Turkey, Iran, Syria, Armenia and other nations in the region.
Many have little access to the Gospel. In addition to conflict born of neighboring countries who want to dominate the people, the nomadic lifestyle has left them with high illiteracy rates and different dialects.
All of these issues combine to make ministry to the Kurds a challenge. This week, the IMB honors the service of their slain workers by not only participating in a Week of Prayer for the Kurds, but also continuing other projects aimed at bringing the Gospel to them.
For more information and details of how you can be involved, go to: http://imb.org/kurds.