Closings and delays

Winston-Salem missionaries help thousands of Syrian refugees

AMMAN, JORDAN — For the past year, Winston-Salem native Matt Nance and his wife Susan have worked as Christian missionaries in Jordan, helping thousands of refugees from Syria who are fleeing from the violence and  concerned over what may happen in the coming days.

Nance said the Syrian people are kind, hospitable and want the fighting to end. He said most of them aren’t talking about possible strikes on the Syrian government by the U.S. because they don’t want to think about more violence.

“Every single one of them fled their country because they wanted nothing to do with the violence there, so I don’t think any of them want more violence in their country.  They want this to end,” Nance said.

The Nance’s provide food, clothing, medicine, blankets and more to the 600,000 refugees in Jordan. They are mostly women and children who have lost everything in the conflict.

“Almost every refugee family we work with, their home was destroyed.  They have nothing to return to, they have no homes, businesses, they have nothing left in Syria,”  said Nance.

Nance said while some of the people they are helping do have injuries from chemical warfare, he and his wife are not getting wrapped in the politics of the civil war.

“What strikes us about it is the humanness of the situation and that’s why we are here. We are not here to play politics or point fingers in one way or the other, all we are here to do is to say these are people, innocent people and children we love.  They are just like us,”  said Nance.

Pinedale Christian Church in Winston-Salem is helping support the couple’s work. They do “FaceTime” reports during some Sunday services. They want the people supporting them to know their help is crucial.

“The work we are doing here in Jordan for these Syrian families, it makes a difference in the children’s lives and in the innocent people’s lives and it’s because normal people in America allow us to do it,” said Nance.

The couple just had their first child and said they plan to make Jordan their home until their help is not needed.

Matt said as America decides how to respond, “I am worried about the people who live in Syria that are going to suffer either way.  I believe America is in a tough position and people are going to continue to suffer and we are worried about them.”

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