#ForBeirut – SAT-7 launches appeal for Lebanon
SAT-7 launches a major support initiative in Lebanon following the explosion that caused many casualties and extensive damage in Beirut, a city the Middle East Christian broadcaster calls home.
Amid yet another crisis to hit an already fragile city, SAT-7 staff remain standing in Beirut, continuing to broadcast live from their studio as part of an emergency response across SAT-7’s Arabic channels. As part of its #ForBeirut – Standing Firm in Faith campaign, SAT-7 calls on supporters worldwide to pray and to send video messages of support to their fellow Christians in Beirut, as well as to donate to cover the cost of its response.
“This is a bleak and dark hour for Lebanon. We must come alongside our brothers and sisters at this time as they stand firm in faith and offer spiritual, emotional, and physical support and encouragement – hold out hope – to their fellow citizens, many of whom are on the brink of hunger and despair.”
Rita El-Mounayer, SAT-7 CEO
The #ForBeirut project encompasses the ministry’s response to the disaster, across SAT-7 ARABIC, the educational brand SAT-7 ACADEMY, and children’s channel SAT-7 KIDS. As they have throughout the coronavirus pandemic, these channels will provide spiritual and emotional support for viewers while complementing the work of humanitarian agencies and local churches, enabling the Church to safely reach everyone affected.
Strength for today, hope for tomorrow
Trusting in the faithful response of SAT-7’s supporters, SAT-7’s Beirut-based team began its response immediately. Twenty-four hours after the explosion, the studio broadcast Lebanon: Pain and Hope, a live program in which three local church leaders came alongside viewers in their shock and pain, offering prayer and consolation. Prayer support from church leaders will continue every day on SAT-7 ARABIC at 6 p.m., the time of the explosion.
The following evening, the channel broadcast a remarkable prayer and worship program live from the rooftop of its studio. The channel has also begun showing You Are Not Alone, which shares stories of courage, resilience, and hope from the blast and its aftermath and will include reports from local initiatives, carried out with participation from SAT-7 staff, to help with recovery work and food support vulnerable people. SAT-7’s local team also distributed food and water to those involved in the recovery effort.
A special episode of Bible Heroes on SAT-7 KIDS on Friday saw messages of prayer for Beirut pour in from all over the world. For the rest of the summer, children across the Middle East and North Africa will be brought together in a special creative and prayer project, The Story of this Summer. This project, developed with child psychology experts, will give children a vital emotional, and spiritual outlet.
“Seeing young people react to the crisis by helping others, by being full of hope, reminded me that a future is possible – thanks to them! We need to stand alongside them. We need youth programs. We need to allow them to express their opinions and pass on the torch to them as the leaders of tomorrow. If we do not work with them – if we do not give them a voice – Lebanon will lose them.”
Juliana Sfeir, SAT-7 ACADEMY Brand Manager
Beyond SAT-7’s emergency response, the #ForBeirut project will resource Lebanese people in the longer term as they look to a new day, seeking to rebuild stronger than before.
Call to pray and support
Prayers and messages of support have already poured in from viewers across the Arabic channel and from SAT-7 leaders from the other major-language channels.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the people of Lebanon,” shared Panayiotis Keenan, SAT-7 PARS Executive Director. “May the Lord strengthen them and protect them, and may His peace be upon them. ‘In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world’ (John 16:33)”.
“We are praying and fasting for Lebanon, the ‘apple of the eye of the East and the wonderful land with beautiful highlands’ (Deuteronomy 3:25). We call upon all nations to pray to our Lord for the economic and political problems of Lebanon and Turkey, whose destinies, just like their peoples, are so connected,” said Melih Ekener, Executive Director of SAT-7 TÜRK.
SAT-7’s appeal asks supporters to pray and donate to the ministry as it:
- Meets the urgent spiritual and emotional needs of viewers in Beirut and across Lebanon.
- Brings together people who are isolated and alone through live, faith-filled programs.
- Responds sensitively as viewers call, email, or message its channels.
Will you stand in faith with us #ForBeirut?
Churches and individuals are invited to send video messages of prayer and support for their brothers and sisters, or to write messages. Please send prayers through video or email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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