Hosted by the Evangelical Fellowship of Egypt, Tunnicliffe visited a vast array of ministries who operate under the umbrella of the Fellowship. With over a million evangelical Christians in Egypt, the Fellowship seeks to impact their society by caring for the poorest of the poor, assisting the vulnerable and reaching the spiritually lost. It also communicates its message through the use of radio, television, publication and the Internet.
Tunnicliffe reports, ?I was deeply impressed with the growing commitment to mission arising in the Egyptian church to not only make Christ known in their own country but to the surrounding nations.?
In Israel, under the auspices of the United Church Council of Israel (A WEA member body,) Tunnicliffe met with a broad spectrum of leaders that represented the breadth of the evangelical community. Given the complexity of issues and the challenges of the current environment, the believers are seeking to be bold and faithful witnesses for Christ.
When Tunnicliffe was asked how Christians around the world should respond to the recent election of Hamas, he said, ?Our first impulse should be to pray.?
?We also must find ways of encouraging our brothers and sisters in Christ,? he continued. ?I heard a very consistent message from the Palestinian, Arab and Messianic church leaders. For the most part these groups of believers feel invisible to the million plus Christian tourists who visit the land where Jesus walked. Very few tourists ever take time to meet with those who are actually followers of Jesus.?
?God is doing some amazing work in this land,? he continued. ?People are being transformed by the Gospel of Christ. Palestinian and Messianic believers are finding meaningful ways of reconciliation. The problem is that most of the Christians outside of the region just don?t take the time to understand the current reality for the church. Complicated? Yes. Confusing at times? Absolutely. However, these challenges should not deter us from supporting our sisters and brothers who are living out their faith in the midst of very trying and often tense circumstances.?
While visiting the Christian leaders, Tunnicliffe committed to expanding the voice of the diverse dimensions of the Church in this region. ?We simply want to serve our community of faith in this region by amplifying their message to the global church.?
In addition to meeting with Christian leaders, Tunnicliffe was invited to the Knesset, to meet with Israeli parliamentarians who form the Christian Allied Caucus. The Fourteen members of this Caucus, drawn from various political parties, work to build bridges of understanding between Christians, Jews and the Israeli governments. The chairman of the caucus invited the leadership of WEA to meet with them so they could gain a greater understanding of the diversity of the global evangelical church.
In concluding his visit, Tunnicliffe indicated the need for meaningful engagement by the WEA in this region through the strengthening of its existing alliances and by helping establish new networks of evangelical believers.
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