Inside MAI Blog: Thoughts on global publishing

Pray for Christian writers in the Arab world

You’ve seen the images of foreign journalists in Egypt under duress—people like CNN’s Anderson Cooper scrambling for cover. Foreign journalists are being targeted, and the violent clamp-down on press freedom is wrong.

But as soon as Egypt’s crisis ends (and let’s pray that any transition of power occurs peacefully), the Anderson Coopers will be gone. And a different kind of journalist challenge will remain.

I’m thinking now of Christian writers in the Arab world. Imagine the unique set of challenges they must face.

MAI is involved in a three-year training program for Christian authors in the Arab world. The first training workshop took place last November in Beirut. In fact, one participant from Egypt has an office right on Cairo’s conflicted Tahrir Square. (We’ve learned he’s okay.)

I asked the coordinator of the training program why it’s so important to develop Christian authors in the Arab world.

“We have a dominant religion in our region, where God has a prominent role,” he said. “We need Christian writers who will create an awareness of ways in which the image of God may be distorted. The [Arab] people are not atheists, but they may not understand the nature of God. We need writers who will tackle these issues, but they are limited in their freedom of expression.

“You look at the political turmoil in the region, the frequent changes of governments, the injustices in a place like Iraq where Christians feel like they are an easy target. We need authors who will write with all these challenges in mind.”

Such writing requires the greatest kind of discernment and courage. I admire these Christian writers in the Arab world, and thank God for them. Pray for their protection and that their written words will give Life and hope to readers in the region.

Read more about MAI's training of Arab writers in the article, "Arab Writers Focus on Life's Big Questions"

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