1 Corinthians 12:26 says “If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.” Let’s therefore glorify God and love our neighbors like ourselves by extending a helping hand to those in need and opening our arms to the needy to assist them in time of crisis.
Currently, the ones in immediate crisis are residents of Ukraine fleeing from conflict zones and arriving among us with little or no support. The IBC Brussels – Helping Hands Team was therefore set up shortly after the start of the war in Ukraine and has 33 volunteers who are mainly IBC Brussels church members. Joanna and Jos, the main coordinators are closely supported by Pastor Roland as well as the facilitators of the Legal, Practical, Pastoral, Translation/Outreach, and Prayer Teams.
Our purpose is to empower the families who come under our care, to enable them to feel supported while settling down during the first weeks and then helping them to find their way around, so they can feel ‘at home’ in Belgium for the duration of their stay here. We have a two-fold approach in implementing this mission:
- Financial aid to churches and organizations directly helping refugees;
- Practical and pastoral help through: a) coming alongside refugees in Belgium needing basic necessities and engaging with families who host; (b) creating a support network through the IBC Brussels church family to share the gospel in word and deed.
A number of meals are delivered weekly to refugee families who have asked our help and we have provided for material needs. Finding emergency accommodation for persons arriving in Belgium prior to their registration remains a challenge, but we are praying for the Lord to make a way. Next month, one of the Ukrainian refugee families whom we are hosting is expecting a baby. IBC Brussels church is looking forward to praising the Lord for His blessing to this family and rejoice with the parents as they welcome in this world a baby girl.
Helping Hands Team, IBC Brussels