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SAT-7 programming responds to emotional toll of Syrian conflict

By March 5, 2012

Syria (MNN) — The physical cost of Syria's current state of violence has been great. Conservative estimates say that over 6,000 people have died during the last year's unrest. Still, most have so far avoided this fate. But no one has been able to escape the emotional toll the crisis demands.

As mortar shells and rockets fall on Homs, Syrians are asking why and how such devastation could occur. In response to this prolonged agony, SAT-7 programming is addressing how to cope with and respond to the events taking place.

SAT-7, a Christian satellite television service to North Africa and the Middle East, has certainly not been shy on the subject of Syria, or on comforting the nation's people. During difficult times, SAT-7 aims to transmit a message of comfort and encouragement. SAT-7 believes calling people to pray gives them a hope for the future that with God's power, can be better than today.

SAT-7 broadcasts a current events show called "Salt of the Earth." Recently, the program aired an episode about fears for Syria's future. The show host interviewed Bessam Kamel, a member of the General Secretariat of the Syrian National Counci. Kamel stressed the importance of being part of the solution to the problem. He also emphasized the priority of protecting religious minorities like Christians.

This was some comfort, but news broadcasts from other media outlets in the region have been showing images of people injured and dying. A LIVE SAT-7 broadcast of a sermon preached in Egypt spoke to the difficulty of understanding violence from a Christian perspective.

"We are called to beseech God to stop the spilling of blood, so that there will not be killing and victimization of others," the speaker charged. "And we should not be selfish and forget our brothers [and sisters] in Syria, for they are suffering too… As we pass through these difficult circumstances, we are called to be joyful."

Furthermore, in the series "The Revealer of Secrets", SAT-7 ARABIC is running a report called "Pray for Syria." It is running similar reports for Yemen, Egypt, Sudan, and Tunisia. The report begins with a background that familiarizes the viewer with basic facts about the country. This leads into a description of Syrian Christians' role and predicament in society.

"Christians live in a state of silence in the shadow of these circumstances. And as a result of this silence, incorrect concepts of Christianity dominate…. In spite of the spiritual chains and social barriers, the Word of God will continue. We pray for the Syrian people and the Church in Syria, that God will truly draw them near to Himself."

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