IME empowers Arab Christ-followers to share the grace and truth of Jesus among the least reached and to establish creative, reproducing faith families throughout the Middle East.
News from the Frontlines
Church planting efforts in Amman, the capital of Jordan, have been interrupted by the unprecedented influx of refugees into this tiny nation. A single congregation is heroically attempting to serve 4,000 Syrian refugee households and another 500 Iraqi refugee families. The United Nations projects that by the end of 2015 there will be over 1,000,000 refugees in Jordan, which has a population of 6 million in an area the size of Indiana.
IME’s newest mission thrust in the Middle East is in the Galilee region of Israel, specifically the city of Nazareth, the boyhood home of Jesus. Led by an Asbury Theological Seminary grad, the work now includes five church planters and ten (10) house churches with 140 in attendance. The 1.6 million Israeli Arabs in the nation represent the target population.
While access to many countries in the Middle East and North Africa is restricted, IME’s strategy is to utilize workers from neighboring countries in the region for whom access is not a major obstacle. Language and ethnic barriers are less challenging to people from similar cultural backgrounds. IME has established fourteen (14) house churches in two limited-access countries in North Africa.
Our work in Iraq began in 2003 in Baghdad. The intense conflict and persecution of Christians there forced most believers to flee the capital city for the relative safety of northern Iraq (Kurdistan). Many of those displaced by the war became the nucleus for our first government-sanctioned church in 2007. For the present, the ministry remains centered in the provincial capital of Dohuk, less than 50 miles from the ISIS-held city of Mosul.
IME coordinates three church planting networks in Egypt representing over 800 house churches. Partnering with established churches where practical, the focus is on the discipling of new converts and raising up new leaders. A group of gifted young women are providing leadership in one such network.