Europe (MNN) — Even in the worst of times, especially in the worst of times, God is at work. There’s proof of that with the refugee crisis, which has been migrating into Europe.
After forces of war and terrorism, hundreds of thousands have poured into Europe–legally and illegally. Some countries–Sweden, Luxembourg, Holland, Germany, and the UK–have gladly opened arms to the persecuted and war-torn victims. But Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Romania, and the Czech Republic have closed the gates– some figuratively, others literally.
“We must not fall prey to nationalist sentiments in these moments. It is precisely now that we need more Europe, not less,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel said last week in the European Parliament. “We need to see them as people, not as an anonymous mass, irrespective of whether they have a right to stay or not.”
Even with the echoing of the chancellor’s powerful words, in the “less accepting” countries, unwelcome refugees who have successfully crossed the border are being immediately arrested, transported to train stations, and left by the tracks.
Though spaces are cramped, supplies are dwindling, and futures are unforeseeable, there is still hope.
The Power of a Booklet
“All sorts of churches and ministries are taking this advantage–this opportunity–and reaching out,” says Helen Williams of World Missionary Press (WMP).
Churches, even in unwelcoming countries, are opening arms, accepting refugees, and providing for them.
In Hungary, share Williams, there were several churches that went to train stations to give out food, clothing, and the Gospel. But one of the immediate problems was they didn’t have translators and weren’t able to speak in the same tongue as refugees.
Williams says, “They were looking for literature.”
In the past, these same Hungarian churches had sought after and used WMP Scripture booklets to get the Word out. After seeing the scope of the refugee problem, they turned to the booklets again, asking WMP for thousands.
“They were able to use them when the flood [of refugees] really started to move into Hungary,” Williams says.
Other church groups and a Bible college are also ministering to refugees. One of their favorite booklets to give is How to Know God, which was written specifically for Muslims.
“Almost every person that they gave it to received it gladly. [They] said it’s a great way to communicate, but ‘we need a larger order.’”
WMP ended up sending 12,000 Scripture booklets in 10 different languages.
After receiving the booklets, Williams received the reply, “Thank you so much. We are blown away by the Body of Christ. Even if the refugees are rerouted from Hungary, we’re still going to go work with them across the border in Serbia.”
Williams says it’s exciting to see how Hungarian churches and ministries are working to share Christ. They’re just one of the many who are successfully sharing the Gospel with booklets.
Every day, WMP is receiving requests for Scripture booklets from all over Europe.The ministry has received e-mails from Sweden, France, Finland, Germany, and Denmark, just to name a few. Scripture booklets by the hundred of thousands are being sent out. In places where only a few would normally be requested, the numbers have quadrupled. Denmark, for instance, recently requested 1.5 million booklets, which WMP will fulfill.
“It’s so exciting that these churches, these ministries, these pastors, are saying we can do something. This is an open door. These people in their home countries may not have been able to get access to the Scriptures. We may not have been able to reach them there. But they’re here now.”
Each ministry, church, Bible college, and pastor has told Williams how they are working, making a difference in refugees’ lives, and how the booklets are able to share the Good News with individuals in their heart language and connect on a new level.
“Our vision is to provide free Scripture booklets in the heart languages of the world. We have free material available in 343 languages, and that covers a great deal of the world that would speak at least one of those languages.”
How you can get involved
WMP and their distributors all over the world are seeing miracles resulting from reading a booklet. They’re seeing how God is blessing their work and helping the Gospel to become more wide spread. And while WMP booklets are given away for free, each costs about five cents, which in all aspects, isn’t much.
“I know that there are humanitarian needs, but they need the Bread of Life as well,” Williams says. Imagine what you could do with $10. You could give a refugee, or an entire refugee family everlasting life.
“There’s nothing too small because of what the Lord does with it here. He kind of blesses the loaves and fishes here.” To donate to WMP, give here.