A family gathering in a Gulf nation.
The nations of the Arab Peninsula attract people from around the world. Some come to participate in a religious pilgrimage while others arrive seeking job opportunities.
Very few who decide to settle are ever given the opportunity to become citizens. “I know of one family where a grandfather came for a visit and stayed. Some of the family members have since become Christians,” said a front-line worker. “And if they, or other second- or third-generation people living in the country, experience persecution … the church becomes their only refuge.” The front-line worker reports that stateless Christians from sub-Saharan African or Asian nations can face particularly harsh pressure: “It’s important for us to keep supporting the local church because that’s their only support.”