Arab winter not stopping Christian outreach

By March 19, 2013

North Africa (MNN) — North Africa is an area of the world that has been drawing attention of the international community, it's also drawing the attention of Christians. It's an area of the world that birthed the Arab Spring and is now home to what many call the Arab Winter. Despite what these descriptions mean politically and spiritually, Christians aren't forgetting how important it is to reach out to this area of the world.

The Evangelical Alliance Mission (TEAM) is in North Africa to do one thing — learn. TEAM's Robert Johnson says, "We're going to live with the people for about a week — eight days. We're going to do some English teaching and culture gathering and seeing what it's really like to be North African."

TEAM already works with North African immigrants living in Europe. Johnson says being in North Africa helps them get at the roots of the North African people and see how they live so TEAM can be more relevant.

Johnson says this is important as they're, "Building relationships with people and just listening and sharing when we have an opportunity of where we are, but also hearing where they are."

There are rules they have to follow. "You can't hand out Bibles, but you can talk about God. You can't tell them they need to convert, but you can share what faith has done in your life. There is openness, but there are some pretty strict limitations."

Johnson, as a photographer, will be trying to gather pictures that tell a story. "I feel that could be a way to see inside of what culture — what the life of someone living in North Africa is living like every day. I really just want to be a part of their lives."

Prayer is needed while TEAM is there. "Pray for open hearts [and] open doors. Pray for positive relationships being built. That positive fruit will be developed through these trips and the right connections will come about."

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