As Terror Creeps In, What Is the Church’s Role?

Over the weekend, the world mourned violent and deadly attacks in Paris. Now, strikes and raids in the Middle East continue, and those ravaged by war are seeking safety. But the most controversial question remains: “Where should they go?”

In addition to that pressing question, the American Pastors Network (www.AmericanPastorsNetwork.net) is also asking: “How should we pray?” and “What is the Church’s Role?”

APN President Sam Rohrer and Pennsylvania Pastors Network  Executive Director Gary Dull talked about these disturbing headlines this week on the daily one-hour “Stand in the Gap Today” radio program.

“In these extremely trying times, when the rest of the world is considering policy, religious tests, how to handle refugees and their children, and other pressing matters, we must first and foremost consider prayer and turning to God for guidance,” Rohrer said. “The Lord’s way is the only way in all things, especially when so much turmoil and strife plague our world daily. What should be the focus of our prayers? What is the role and focus for pastors? These are questions we must fervently ask.”

The American Pastors Network gives answers on the daily “Stand in the Gap Today” radio program.  On the show this week, the hosts mentioned The Presidential Prayer Team, the largest prayer movement for the nation with 5.2 million members established in September 2001, which recently issued a Prayer Alert calling for prayer about:

  • God’s protection over America and freedom from fear of imminent ISIS actions in the United States.
  • Law enforcement and intelligence agencies in the U.S to apprehend ISIS operatives on American soil.
  • That Americans would take the ISIS threat seriously.
  • The decision to bring Syrian refugees into the U.S. and the vetting process.

This week, presidential hopeful Ted Cruz introduced legislation that would allow Congress to bar the 10,000 Syrian refugees that may be crossing the U.S. border before the end of the year, according to the Washington Post. Likewise, according to the Prayer Alert, Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) is calling for a temporary stop to Syrian refugees from coming into the country. TheHill.com is also reporting that Speaker Paul Ryan says the House may vote this week on a bill to pause the refugee influx.

In Pennsylvania, the home of PPN, Gov. Tom Wolf has stated that he will not prevent Syrian refugees from entering the state.

“It is a serious matter that Gov. Wolf is welcoming Syrian refugees into our state with open arms,” Dull said. “Yes, as Christians, we are to clothe, feed and care for the poor and the lost, as Jesus commanded. But when it comes to allowing potentially dangerous people with possible evil intentions into our own home, we must think, act and react in a manner that is safest for our nation. Many other governors have already said their states will not be opening their doors to refugees because there is simply no way to know who truly needs asylum and who is evil. There is too much at risk.”

4 thoughts on “As Terror Creeps In, What Is the Church’s Role?

  1. I hear nothing but negative comments from my husband, co-workers and friends. Yes, these are frightening times we live in. And I feel that we no longer completely trust our government. We only see pictures of the children while we are told that most of these refugees are young single men. I don’t know. All I know is my Father expects me to love. He will take care of the rest. No,as a mother and grandmother I’m afraid for them to come here . But as a child of God, I will care for them when they come here. Perhaps those of their ranks that are terrorist plants will see and be converted.

  2. As an ordained pastor, and former mayor in the 1990’s, and now as a Pennsylvania Township Supervisor, I have learned well, the role of an elected official. Whether a small town mayor or governor or even President of the United States, the number one responsibility of the individual in office, is the safety of the people who elected him. The Christian faces the challenge to want to extend a hand of mercy and grace to refugees. It is a priority, however, for the elected official to protect the people of his electorate. As a Christian, I must remain true to my elected responsibility. I look for ways to minister to those in need, and those in harms way, but if our country is not protected and preserved, we will loose our ability to reach out with a helping hand. I pray, God give us Your wisdom in these trying times.

  3. I agree that we cannot allow refugees to enter our country. Those who truly need our help will be thankful for whatever we can do, understanding our dilemma as they know better than we do how dangerous those individuals who would use them for their own evil plot would be. God will guide if we call on Him for wisdom.

  4. I agree with both, Bob and Louise. I’m sure many just want to live a peaceful life, however they were raised in a different culture with different beliefs. They will not want to assimilate because Christianity is a foreign and frightening concept. How would you feel if someone told you something you had been taught all your life was wrong? I’ve heard that refugees in Europe discarded items collected for them by well-meaning people because they felt they (refugees) deserved better. There is a culture clash here. Are we headed for civil war in the U.S. between those sympathetic toward Syrians and those against??

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