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A Netherlands church hosts 24/7 worship services for refugees facing deportation

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For the purpose of protecting a refugee family from deportation, a church in Netherlands has arranged a 24/7 worship service seven days a week. This worship service has been going on since a month, as the Armenian refugee family Sasun, Anousche Tamrazyan and their three children who are likely to face deportation.

Churches in Europe

It is reported that Sasun and Anousche Tamrazyan faced death threats in their own country because of Sasun’s political activities. They fled from Armenia and arrived in the Netherlands and have been living there for nine years. A Dutch judge granted them asylum however the government challenged the decision and was successful in overturning the decision.

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Later the Armenian refugees applied for a “children’s pardon” according to this program refugee families with children who have lived for over five years are allowed to stay in Netherlands. Earlier this year, their appeal for “children’s pardon” was denied. For two years they lived in refugee shelter in Katwijk. In September, a deportation order was issued which left the family marooned seeking help from the churches.

The Bethel Church in Hague gave them sanctuary on October 25. The Dutch law does not permit the policemen to enter churches in order to enforce immigration orders during services. For this reason, pastors are taking turns to conduct non-stop worship service so as to prevent the police from entering the church where the Armenian family has taken refuge.

This never-ending service involves 400 pastors and lay people who actively participate in this cause. The church claims that so far, about 3,500 people from across the country have come in order to participate in this never-ending service.

The service started on October 26, at 1:30 p.m. it has been more than 800 hours of consecutive worship service. Since then, there is no clue of ending this service. he church has held over 800 consecutive hours of worship service. There is no indication on when the service will end. The Bethel Church pastor Alex Wicke tweeted: “We do all this by continuously praying, singing, listening to sermons and worshipping. The Tamrazyan family is literally living in a protective house built by prayers and worship.”