UK Christians have joined believers from around the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) in a Christmas carol music video to highlight how believers in the region are silenced and unable to celebrate Jesus’ birth.
Musicians and singers from Iran, Egypt, Lebanon, Tunisia, Türkiye, Cyprus and the UK collaborated in recording a multi-language version of “Silent Night” for an Advent campaign by Christian TV and digital media network, SAT-7. The charity is also inviting churches, community groups, schools and businesses to record their own versions in the Silent Night Christmas Challenge. Clips from these will be added to an even bigger multi-cam recording.
“We are focusing our UK activities this Advent around the Silent Night theme,” explained Senior Director, Martin Thomas. “Advent prayer guides for individuals and churches as well as the Silent Night Christmas Challenge and a Poetry Challenge all aim to draw us closer in understanding and solidarity with our brothers and sisters in the MENA. So many are silenced by laws or societal pressure – even by their own families. In places like Iran and Afghanistan, Christians face arrest or even death for meeting together.”
For the Silent Night video, over 30 recordings in English, Arabic, Turkish, French and Persian, backed by western and oriental instruments, have been edited together. The video will be shown on SAT-7’s satellite TV and digital media channels across the MENA to encourage the network’s millions of viewers. It will also be shared on social media in the UK to raise awareness of SAT-7’s work.
The project has the backing of British TV presenter Gemma Hunt. She said: “At a time of year when Christians in the Middle East can feel isolated, we hope that this special recording of Silent Night will help everyone feel more connected together across the world.”
Watch the video and find out how you can be involved at www.sat7uk.org/silent