“Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ.” 1 Corinthians 12:12.

We read this beautiful imagery from the Apostle Paul and see the Church as God designed it to be; Jesus followers, united in their diversity. In the midst of a broken world, the local Church is a beacon of unity and the embodiment of a love that has the power to transform even the most tragic of circumstances.

We have looked on in horror at the destruction in Turkey and Syria following the devastating earthquake on 6th February. OM partners and local churches are responding by providing essential provision to survivors and redistributing resources to where they are needed most. These teams are best placed to identify needs and respond in love to those affected by the unfolding crisis. 

Next week (24th February) also marks a year since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. A country, still recovering from the effects of conflict over the Crimean Peninsula in 2014, has been further devastated by the consequences of war. But through these challenging circumstances, there has been a shift within the local Church in Ukraine.

“As the suffering continued, something began to change inside the Church,” Oleg, a chaplain in Ukraine explained. “Not one church has stayed indifferent. Everyone has got involved… The Church has profoundly mobilised. It is truly an inspired time.”

Workers in Ukraine have been supporting local churches as they’ve instinctively responded to those who are internally displaced or suffering due to the war with physical, spiritual and emotional support. “As people who carry the hope of Christ within us during this difficult time in Ukraine, we often act as agents of hope,” says Stefan, Crisis Manager of OM in Ukraine. “And for us, it is a privilege to be with them in their time of need. We know that the body of Christ is not going to run away. It’s going to serve each other. And we will continue to do so.”

Oleg looks at the church in Ukraine and sees, “…a wonderful time of unity.” His beautiful statement feels almost surreal when surrounded by devastation and conflict, but it is a testament to our extraordinary God, who is working powerfully through His church to bring redemption and unity.

Let’s join together in praying for a movement of God's love through the local Church in Turkey and Syria, so that similar testimonies may be shared of the body of Christ "profoundly mobilised" to share His love in the midst of crisis. 

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