WelCom News
A newspaper for the Wellington and Palmerston North Catholic Dioceses

Gulf Bible Society head visits New Zealand

WelCom September 2018:

Annette Scullion

Dr Hrayr Jebejian with NZ Bible Society CEO Francis Burdett at the Kāpiti supporters morning tea. Photo: Supplied

During a visit to New Zealand last month Dr Hrayr Jebejian, head of Bible Society in the Gulf, spoke to groups in Wellington and Kāpiti about his mission. He oversees Bible mission in seven Gulf nations: Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Yemen.

He said that despite the wealth of these countries, there is a huge problem with the exploitation of the migrant workers. There are 25 million foreigners working in these countries and 15 million of them are labourers who are often exploited working on infrastructure developments such as building sky scrapers and wealthy landmarks. They face many challenges including addictions, loneliness, depression, prostitution and suicide. Hrayr is passionate about reaching these people with the hope of the Bible.

Bible Society works closely with the Arabic Christian communities including a large Catholic community to reach the migrants, many of whom are hearing about Jesus and the Christian message of hope for the first time.

‘We want to help the migrant communities in the Gulf to have a copy of the Bible translated into their own languages and we are working in partnership with Bible Society New Zealand to achieve that.

‘We need to make the world a better place to live in. In New Zealand you have that in your environment and in your people. You need to share that with the world,’ Dr Hrayr told the gathering in Wellington.

The Bible Society in the Gulf operates 22 centres in the region.

Dr Hrayr has worked for Bible Society since 1980. He is married to Dr Arda Boynerian Jebejian and they have two children, Vahe, 22, and Alik, 20. They live in Cyprus.