Why Christar

Manarah: Understanding Islam Through Experience

“We learned much more than reading a book could ever teach us. It was exciting and humbling to share the good news with Muslims who have never heard.”

Manarah, Christar’s training program in understanding and sharing Jesus with Muslims, is designed to provide not only head knowledge, but understanding gained from experience. Participants spend mornings and early afternoons in classes taught by Christar workers who’ve lived and served among Muslims. They learn about Islamic history, beliefs, culture and worldview, as well as effectively communicating the hope of Christ. But their education doesn’t end with these classroom sessions—it’s only beginning.

Participants are required to spend 35 hours in conversation with Muslims, not only sharing their faith, but listening and getting to know these Muslims’ religion and culture. Grace*, who participated in Manarah last summer, explains. “After class each day, we were instructed to enter the community in small groups and engage in conversation with Muslims at parks, the marketplace, cafés and shops. Our training began just as Ramadan (the Muslim month of fasting) was ending, so it was pretty easy to start a conversation with reference to the holiday.”

In addition to casual interaction, participants were also welcomed into three mosques. Grace recalls, “During each visit, we had amazing Q&A discussions with passionate Muslim leaders and apologists. … I came away even more confident and excited about my faith.”

Students also participate in local ministries such as helping teach English at the church where Manarah is held. Nick, who attended Manarah with his wife Yvonne, had the opportunity to serve as a conversation partner for the same Muslim man several times. “It was exciting to see how hungry he was to hear about the good news and who God is,” Nick shares.

Personal connections like this are a highlight of Manarah for many participants. Grace was able to develop a friendship with a young Muslim woman who came to practice English. “Each time I saw her, she just wanted to open the Bible and listen to stories of Jesus and what God’s Word says about judgment, forgiveness and life. She was so receptive! Talking with her filled my spirit with zeal for the gospel.”

Many participants come away encouraged, not only by their greater understanding of Muslims and ability to share Jesus with them, but by a renewed joy in God’s free gift of salvation. Nick and Yvonne share, “The good news of our self-sacrificial King is a message that Muslims desperately need to hear. What hope we have as followers of Jesus to rely on the work of Another instead of daily striving in our own strength and efforts to be good enough, clean enough, for God to accept us. Our time studying Islam has led us to a much deeper gratitude for the gospel.”


How can I get involved?

Pray:

  • Lift up participants in Manarah, asking God to give them health and strength as they complete intensive study.
  • Ask God to give students open doors to talk about spiritual truth with Muslims.
  • Pray that participants will be free from anxiety as they share the gospel with Muslims.

Learn:

Are you interested in learning more about Islam and discovering how to share Jesus with Muslims? Consider attending Manarah this summer!