Tragedy in Beirut and What It Means for Missions

On August 4, the world was rocked by news of two fatal explosions in Beirut. Pierre Rashad Houssney shares how is the church responding and what it matters.

On August 4, 2020, the world’s eyes were glued on Beirut, Lebanon as two fatal explosions in a major urban center caused at least 171 deaths, 6,000 injuries, rocked social media, and left an estimated 300,000 people homeless. Pierre Rashad Houssney is Middle East and North Africa Regional Director for Horizons International, based in Beirut, and is a Lebanese-American who grew up in the context of cross-cultural ministry among Muslims and international students. This week, we ask Pierre the question many missions-minded believers are asking: what happened in Beirut, and what does it mean for the cause of the gospel?

Pierre has been in full-time ministry with Horizons International since 2006, and has been an active member of Horizons’ teaching staff and curriculum development team since 2002. Pierre lives in Beirut, Lebanon, with his wife Gigi and their two children. He leads a team of nationals and missionaries who run a center for evangelism and discipleship among Muslims. He holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Northern Colorado and is fluent in English and Arabic.

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Alex Kocman & Scott Dunford

Alex Kocman is the Director of Communications and Engagement for ABWE. He serves as general editor for Message Magazine and co-hosts The Missions Podcast. After earning his M.A. in Communication and B.S. in Biblical Studies, he served as an online apologetics instructor with Liberty University and a youth pastor in Pennsylvania, where he now resides with his wife and three children. Read his blog or follow him on X/Twitter.

Scott Dunford is the pastor of Western Hills Church in San Mateo, Calif. Previously, Scott served as Vice President of Mobilization and Communications for ABWE and as a missionary in East Asia. Scott graduated from Northland International University (B.A. in Pastoral Studies), earned his M.A. in biblical studies from Central Baptist Theological Seminary, his M.B.A. from Cornerstone University, and is currently enrolled in Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary’s D.Min. program with an emphasis on missions.