February 6th at 3am is the anniversary of the earthquake that devastated 10 cities in the Southeast of Turkey and Northwest Syria. It left thousands of deaths, and unbelievable destruction… Millions of people left with nothing.

Remember; people were caught in the earthquake in the deepest sleep in their homes. Those who woke up tried to throw themselves out of bed and onto the streets, pieces of collapsed buildings around them. Incredible dust clouds everywhere, screams, trying to find your family members, cries for help all around. No more houses, no more clothes, no more water, no more food, no more toilets… It’s raining, it’s very cold and those who can, find a place as open as possible, in their pyjamas, most of them barefoot, are just trying to get over the shock.

The church’s response

Immediately after the news of the earthquake, the local Church and the wider church in Turkey went all out to help, with everything they could bring. Thousands of tents were set up, drinks, food, clothes, blankets and hygiene items were delivered as quickly as possible. The Church showed God’s love to the people with an incredible witness. As the months passed, non-governmental organizations and even government agencies began to withdraw. But the Church has continued its ministry in the same way.

The church in Turkey has a 3-phase goal in the Earthquake Ministry;

  • Meet all needs and serve the community.
  • Develop relationships and start regular visits.
  • Share the gospel from the beginning. They have made it clear that the aid is coming from donations from Christian Churches.

The Third Phase

One year after the earthquake, and they are now in the third phase; the Gospel is being shared openly. The prejudices of the local people about Christianity have been broken down, trust has been built and they are open to the Gospel. As a result, the church has responded to thousands of requests for New Testaments in the area. The pews of the churches serving in the area are full and they are looking for new buildings.

Among the earthquake victims there are those who are caring for those in need. As the church in Turkey serves them for the second year, the church will continue to meet their material needs, while at the same time seeking to meet their spiritual needs.

You can pray with the church in Turkey that 2024 will be a year in which they will see the fruits of the seeds sown.

This blog was writen by one of our partners who has been involved in helping the local church in one of the cities devastated by the earthquakes.