Evangelical Philadelphia Nazaraene Marka Church
When Iraqis fleeing war started turning up in a poor neighborhood in Amman, this church wanted to help. Jordan welcomed refugees, but very few lived in classic refugee camps. They moved into cities, but couldn’t take traditional employment and couldn’t enroll their kids in public schools.
The church started The Good Shepherd School, a Christian school for children of Iraqi refugees, many of whom had been out of school for years. It has a Montessori pre-school and Arabic and English curriculum through elementary school. After the persecutions of ISIS forced many Christians to flee Northern Iraq, it also started a social enterprise to help Christian refugees make and sell art to support their families. The ن (Nun) Project, a social enterprise for Iraqi Christian refugees, reclaims and dignifies the Arabic letter N (for “Nazarene” or Christian), which was spray-painted on many Christian homes as a warning that ISIS would loot the home and kill its inhabitants if they remained. The church now has medical, sports, and prayer outreach ministries, and serves as a welcoming committee and beacon of hope for new neighbors in Marka. Pastor Haytham Mazareh, the pastor, visited National in 2019.
National’s investment in this ministry has supported the Good Shepherd School’s growth into a secondary school, and has helped the church as they witness to Christ among neighbors in desperate need of love and connection. A mission trip was unable to visit in August, but National members are supporting Marka Church in prayer and with professional expertise via Zoom.