The Barnabas Fund: British Aid Agency to Persecuted Christians

On May 7, 2019, the military council in control of Sudan declared that Sharia would continue to be the rule of law throughout the country.

COVENTRY, ENGLAND – On May 7, 2019, the military council in control of Sudan declared that Sharia would continue to be the rule of law throughout the country.

By July, it had become clear that Christian women and children comprised the majority of those imprisoned under the strict Islamic law codes. The Barnabas Fund, based in Coventry, England, immediately increased its aid that supports a prison ministry where many of these women and children were being held.

On December 3, Sudan’s new minister for religious affairs announced that Christians will be free to worship without fear of prosecution. He promised to marginalize Sundanese Christians no longer.

“They are Sudanese, and their religion is heavenly with its values and beliefs. We will empower women in society and maximize their religious rights and will work to strengthen their role in building social peace.”

He acknowledged the persecution perpetrated by the previous regime against all non-Muslims and promised that any property stolen from Sudanese Christians and churches will be returned to them by the government’s judicial branch.

The Barnabas Fund is distinct from most evangelical faith-based organizations primarily because it helps to fund projects developed by locals in other countries and advocates for persecuted Christians before the governments or groups doing them harm.

While some FBOs channel funds for broader-based projects, Barnabas Fund directs aid exclusively to Christians in the spirit of Galatians 6:10, where we are instructed to “do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.” There is a fundamental assumption that, although the aid goes directly to local believers, the benefits of a project will generally not be exclusive to them.

The Barnabas Fund generated some impressive results for their 2018-2019 fiscal year, including providing for

  • School classes for more than 15,000 Christian children.
  • Leadership training for more than 11,000 Christian leaders in 20 countries.
  • Support for more than 450 pastors and evangelists.
  • Care for neatly 1,000 persecuted converts in 12 countries and for 14,000 victims of violence in 14 countries.
  • Food and other basic needs for 80,000 Christians.
  • Aid for nearly 25,000 victims of natural disasters.
  • Distribution of more than 270,000 pieces of Christian literature, 235,594 of which were Bibles and New Testaments.
  • Funding for 51 churches and church-affiliated buildings.
  • Medical projects that aided more than 5,000 people in six countries.

The Barnabas Fund has promised that “If you allocate your donation to Barnabas Fund to a specific need or project, 100% of your donation will be used for that project and its costs. Nothing will be deducted from your donation for Barnabas Fund’s overheads. The costs of overheads are taken from donations to our general fund.”

Its founders adopted the name Barnabas Fund because their desire was to provide practical aid from Christians, through Christians, to Christians in the same manner that Paul and Barnabas did as described in Acts chapter 11. The two evangelists had been the instruments to distribute aid from other Christians to Christians who were suffering from famine and persecution in Judea.

As Paul said, “Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.” (KJV)

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