MENA (MNN) — The rise of COVID-19 has seen the rise of another problem: misinformation. Around the world, people struggle to sort through biased, outdated, or simply incorrect information in order to find the means to keep themselves safe and healthy.
In some parts of the world, the confusion isn’t just about the science of COVID-19. In the Middle East and North Africa, people are asking spiritual questions about God’s role in the pandemic. Rex Rogers, President of SAT-7 North America, reports that “People have asked questions like, ‘Does God hate us? Is He trying to punish us? Is He trying to kill us, to wipe us out?’ You know, those kind of fears and a lot of superstitions that rear their head.”
Plus, living conditions make traditional preventive measures difficult for locals in the Middle East. “In the Middle East, you have 50% of the world’s refugees in that region. And that’s probably 40-45 million people, half of them children, and many of them are in refugee camps. Well, how do you social distance in a refugee camp in Jordan or Turkey or Lebanon? It’s very difficult, if not impossible.”
SAT-7 is developing focused programming to address these challenging medical and spiritual questions. They’re airing broadcasts in Arabic, Farsi, and Turkish for adults and kids.
“We try to share with them biblical theology and biblical teaching about who God is: a God of love, and justice and holiness and righteousness who loves them,” Rogers says. “And through Christ, they have salvation.”
God’s not unaware of the pandemic or its affect, and it’s important to remind kids that God has the power to bring good out of a terrible crisis.
The program provides practical advice, too. SAT-7 brings medical experts onto the program to discuss hand-washing and other hygiene awareness topics so kids and adults alike can stay safe and healthy.
The bottom line: SAT-7 is “trying to speak to refugees and internally displaced persons, as well as others, to encourage them and give them practical advice on how to respond to what is a ravaging virus and disease until such a time as we can get our way past it.”
Header photo courtesy of SAT-7