As pressure persists, Iraqi Christian seeks to restart theological training

By January 20, 2020

Iraq (MNN) — Believers push forward in Iraq despite U.S.-Iran pressure and internal struggle. MNN spoke with an Iraqi Christian about conditions on the ground, but for security purposes we cannot share his name.

“Other ministries in the church… these ministries are going now… Sunday worship, other meetings for women, the youth, prayers. All ministries are going well,” he says.

Life as an Iraqi Christian

Active ministry is not easy thanks to present circumstances in Iraq. A tit-for-tat battle between the U.S. and Iran is underway on Iraqi soil. A political reshuffle is underway, and power outages are increasingly common.

Yet, believers use every opportunity to share the love of Christ.

“In November, we also visited Tahrir Square [and] distributed the food for the people, and we prayed for the country… for the leaders to get heavenly wisdom,” the Iraqi Christian says.

Along with serving in his church, the Iraqi Christian MNN spoke to partners with Program for Theological Education by Extension or PTEE.  PTEE works with and through local churches to provide theological training to leaders in Arabic-speaking countries around the world.

Learn more about PTEE here.

“It’s a good program for the leaders… because we don’t have any seminary in Iraq.”

Open Doors placed Iraq at #15 on its World Watch List, a ranking of countries where it’s most difficult to be a Christian. Persecution has fallen since the Islamic State lost territory but remains a significant threat to believers.

How PTEE helps

(Photo courtesy of PTEE)

Factors like these highlight the importance of PTEE’s content and methods. Online education and small group training allow followers of Christ from all backgrounds to grow in their faith.

“We actually organized one class…each year, which will take maybe three to four months. Each class includes around 10 to 12 people,” the Iraqi Christian explains.

Pray that PTEE classes can start again in March. They’re stopped right now because of the tension. See the prompts listed alongside this article for more prayer ideas, or click here.

“[From] October ’til now it’s difficult for Christians; it’s difficult for all the [faith] backgrounds, the groups in Iraq.”

 

 

Header image courtesy of Open Doors USA.

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