You Are Not Alone brings much-needed spiritual encouragement and solidarity to viewers struggling with the loneliness, anxiety, and grief caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. Broadcasting three times weekly, the new program shares uplifting stories of hope and “helpers”, along with a devotion to help viewers fix their eyes on Jesus.

“Fear is human, and we cannot deny that,” says Pastor Emile Al-Tarcheh. “But we must not surrender to it. We must have faith, because faith conquers fear.”

The Syrian church leader shares this encouraging devotional message on the very first episode of You Are Not Alone. “When Jesus’ disciples were with Him in the boat and the storm came, they were afraid, and they woke Him,” he continues. “There is a difference between letting Jesus steer the boat and leaving Him at the back of the boat, sleeping, while you try to take control. Let Jesus lead your life.”

Each 25-minute episode of You Are Not Alone shares important news updates, but also features reports of stories that help viewers feel connected to others. “On this program, we encourage one another by sharing our personal experiences of living through these times,” says presenter Sirene Semerdjian. “We also offer expert advice on how to get through this period with the least damage possible, both physically and emotionally,” she continues. The show’s first expert guest is a psychologist who shares advice for parents.

You Are Not Alone features the stories of inspiring medical workers

The first episode also includes the inspiring stories of medical workers from Arab countries who have been recognised for their work in France, one of the world’s hardest-hit countries. One Lebanese crew was praised by President Hassan Diab, who told them, “Each and every one of you is the pride of Lebanon. We wish you success and hope to see you back in Lebanon soon.” Viewers were also introduced to a musician in Chile, who has been standing outside his parents’ house every day, playing the accordion for them to keep their spirits up.

Psychologist Rima Najm Bajani helps parents help their children adjust

You Are Not Alone further offers viewers an opportunity to pray for those who are suffering around the world, to share each other’s burdens, and to pay tribute to those who have passed away. The first episode shares the prayer needs of two young boys who have both lost their mothers to Covid-19: one in Morocco, who has also tested positive for the virus himself, and the other in Italy. Semerdjian also speaks with Fr Fadi Al-Chidiac, a Jesuit priest from Lebanon whose father has died of Covid-19. The church leader and his mother also contracted the disease but have thankfully recovered. On the show, he speaks candidly of what he has gone through, ending by saying, “It was difficult, but I thank God, for He is with us.”

*All SAT-7 ARABIC programs are being produced in adherence with local public health guidelines, with a skeleton crew and with experts appearing by video link.

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