Afflicted but not Crushed: The Church in South Sudan

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‘’The Church [in South Sudan] can no longer insulate herself against the realities of our time. Constructive engagement is the present imperative; this way, we contribute to transforming society with kingdom values.’’ (Gideon Para-Mallam, Regional Secretary for IFES East Africa)

Following renewed violence, many churches in Juba and elsewhere have recently taken part in a peace march in a bid to demonstrate for peace amid the conflict in the country. 

The realities of the last 6 weeks are stark.  In the eyes of one UN witness, the town of Bentiu “has been wiped out- any remaining citizens have fled and Bor and Malakal have been destroyed”.  Many lives have been shattered in the wake of the violence – over 10,000 people have been killed in the conflict and 400,000 displaced. Those fortunate enough to have found refuge in UN compounds are suffering from overcrowding and lack of basic resources.

“The UN struggles to provide basic water and sanitation facilities for overwhelming numbers’’ (CMS representative South Sudan)

Children in a campAmongst weariness and an enduringly tense atmosphere, the people of Juba held a peace march in January.  Many, including students, marched through major areas, intersections and to government buildings in Juba, praying for peace at each location.  A service of prayer and worship was also held outside the main government offices in the city.   

Churches in South Sudan are committed to peace.  Please keep praying for our brothers and sisters in South Sudan to keep working for reconciliation and stability in their country.  AID continues to believe that the Church is the most effective way of achieving change in the country and continues to work through the church in Juba where possible and appropriate (click here for more details).

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As the peace talks continue, please pray for wisdom for South Sudan and international governments and NGOs in moving forward and trying to bring about a peace that will last in South Sudan. Pray also for the millions of civilians who have once again been thrust into fear and uncertainty of conflict.