Barnabas Aid supporters and staff gathered at the food.gives warehouse in Swindon, UK, to celebrate 30 years of our global ministry to suffering and persecuted Christians.
“Thank you, to you, our faithful and wonderful supporters and friends,” said Dr Patrick Sookhdeo, International Director of Barnabas Aid. “Without you, we would not be here today. It is essentially not just our ministry, but your ministry also.”
More than 170 were present at the celebration event, with several hundred more watching online. Supporters were welcomed by Noel Frost, Barnabas Aid’s Chief Executive Officer (Global).
Dr Sookhdeo reflected that the work of Barnabas remained vital, as Christian suffering around the world has become “so utterly overwhelming” since the ministry began.
“We have a duty of care to those who are part of the Christian family and community,” he continued. “Our ministry is to support and to strengthen and to care for the body of Christ today.
“The Lord who has brought us here is the Lord who will take us forward. The Lord who has been with us throughout the years is the same Lord who will continue to be so as we seek to be faithful to Him.”
“The Lord has done great things”
Supporters were also given an overview from Caroline Kerslake, Barnabas Aid’s International Director of Projects, of just some of the estimated 5,000 aid projects in 109 countries that Barnabas has undertaken over the past 30 years.
This includes physical aid (such as food, water and other basic needs) emotional aid (for example, trauma counselling for those who have suffered anti-Christian violence) and spiritual aid (such as the provision of Bibles and other Christian books for believers who need spiritual nourishment).
“Only the Lord knows,” said Caroline, “how many lives have been saved through Barnabas.”
“The Lord has indeed done great things for us,” she concluded, adding her thanks to Barnabas Aid’s supporters for all that they have done for their suffering and persecuted brothers and sisters.
Updates on the work of food.gives and Barnabas Academia were given by, respectively, Chief Operating Officer Stuart Hook and Deputy International Director Dr Prasad Phillips.
The event concluded with a cake-cutting ceremony conducted by Rosemary Sookhdeo, International Director of Finance.
Barnabas 30-year celebrations are also taking place in Northern Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and the United States.