Christians in northwest Bahrain now have easier access to Bibles and other Christian resources thanks to the opening earlier this month of a new Bible Resource Centre in the coastal town of Al Budaiya.
The new centre was opened by the Bible Society in the Gulf and ‘Rivers of Joy’ – a non-denominational church. It is called Beacon Bookshop and aims to serve Christians from all walks of life and speaking a variety of languages. More than 40% of people in Bahrain are migrant workers and account for most of the country’s 9% Christian population.
Gossip the Gospel
“The purpose of Beacon Bookshop is to gossip the Gospel,” smiles Adriana, an expatriate from Holland, who volunteers at the new centre. Adriana’s sentiment resonates with Hrayr Jebejian, who leads the Bible Society in the Gulf.
“Adriana is absolutely right – what else could be more meaningful than to gossip about the Gospel?” Hrayr Jebejian comments. “This kind of gossip does not harm people but brings them close to Jesus. This new centre’s purpose is to be a true beacon to the community, sharing the breath and light of God so that people can experience a life-giving relationship with Christ.”
Al Budaiya has been the scene of much upheaval in the past few years. Many of its shops and businesses were destroyed during the protests that broke out across the country in early 2011, and tensions continue to simmer, with sporadic protests. In addition, migrants workers here and across the Gulf face many hardships, including loneliness and poor working and living conditions.
Practical and spiritual support
The Bible Society of the Gulf is committed to partnering with churches in Bahrain and other countries in the Arabian Gulf to reach out to migrants and offer them practical and spiritual support.
“Please pray that this new centre and the other two in Bahrain will help the churches to offer the hope and comfort in God’s Word to all who need it,” says Mr Jebejian.
The Bible Society in the Gulf runs 22 Bible Resource Centres in Kuwait, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates,Qatar and Oman.
Click here for previous stories about the Gulf.