A Christian church in Raqqa, Syria has been miraculously rebuilt with the help of Grace Community Church which raised $60,000 for the project, according to CBN News. ISIS destroyed the Armenian Church of the Forty Martyrs after it seized control of the city in 2014, and with liberation in 2017 by Syrian Democratic Forces that were backed by the United States, ISIS was wiped out, and Christians were able to reclaim their freedom and places of worship.
The Free Burma Rangers, founded by Dave Eubank, is an aid group that was called to Raqqa to help rebuild the church. They described seeing a “city lay in ruins” upon their arrival. After praying that the church, which was “just a shell of a building” would be able to rise again, God answered their prayers and sent them the help they needed. American Pastor Tae Pae from Grace Community Church in Maryland vowed to send aid, and his congregation raised $60,000 to help rebuild the church in Raqqa. Pastor Tae Pae and CBN News were able to visit Raqqa this year to see the church that was built and the incredible work that was done.
Eubank expressed his gratitude stating, “thank you all you brothers and sisters in Jesus in America who prayed that this would happen, and people all over the world that prayed. Thank you. Look what happened. Look what God did!” The Free Burma Rangers will remain in Syria to continue their aid in the community by distributing food to those in need and games to children.
Spreading Jesus’ love to the people who have been devastated by the ruthless takeover of ISIS is crucial in their physical, mental, and spiritual recovery. ISIS left the city and its people in ruins who suffered greatly from their heinous acts of violence and murder. All Christians had to flee for safety when ISIS took control in order to save their lives. Although the threat of terrorist cells remains, Christians are now relieved to be able to return to their homes, though only twelve families of 150 who attended the Armenian Church of the Forty Martyrs remain.
CBN reports that one Armenian man told them, “After many years we can finally return to being Armenians. I feel like I am a new Christian all over again. Praise God we now have a place to come and worship and make the sign of the cross!”
The people of Raqqa, Syria have been through an extremely difficult time facing such horrifying conditions as a result of ISIS, but their faith in God did not waver. Having returned to their homes, Christians are eager to celebrate their faith and hope that more people will come to share in praise at their new church. Though the extent of the devastation faced by the people of this community cannot be mended, they can come together to rebuild their strength and rise again.