My hearty thanks first goes to God, for He has made it possible to globalize the world through his gospel which made us one family of God almighty. Millions thanks to Anglican International Development for your spiritual and financial support you have given to me.
Writes John Deng, as he comes to the end of his first year, of a 3-year theology bachelors at George Whitefield College, Cape Town. John was given the opportunity to study in South Africa, as part of a project that is strengthening an existing theology college in South Sudan, Bishop Gwynne College, by training its faculty. John is one of those faculty members. John reviews his last year.
What have you learnt over the last year?
I am pleased to have learned more skills especially in public speaking class and preaching theory & practice as well as other subjects including biblical theology and doctrine, weekly fellowship groups and weekend bible study and church participation as well. All these have introduced me to different means of communicating God’s message to his people compare to the way we do it back home. I can’t wait to give this precious knowledge I had assimilated and give it to my people.
How will your studies benefit South Sudan?
Being at George Whitefield College is an utmost blessing to our people in South Sudan, because our people love God however, they lack biblical understanding and that is why we have many Christians but, they are not fully committed Christians hence, there is need to anchor them to Christ. Such kind of situation would only be rehabilitated by trained clergies like me and others through the light of true gospel that can shape and transform people’s minds.
I can’t wait to [take] this precious knowledge I have assimilated and give it to my people.
What is the role of the Church in the current situation in South Sudan?
I am very optimistic that it’s only the Church that will bring peace and reconciliation in South Sudan, therefore the church needs to stand firm and preach the good news. For this to be accomplished, the church leaders must be trained, otherwise we might only have ‘Christians’ and not believers in South Sudan.
What do you hope to do now you have finished your degree?
I am eager to go and preach, teach, evangelize, transform, reconcile and be an agent of peace to the divided churches and the people of South Sudan. This is the only hope lies ahead, because the crisis has caused a serious division among the Christians in South Sudan.
It’s only the Church that will bring peace and reconciliation in South Sudan
We thank CORE Training [and Development] and Anglican International Development for this initiative to train the Bible teachers and church leaders in order to build their capacities and be able to handle their own affairs. We are very grateful, especially we at Bishop Gwynne College, that this program of training our Bible teachers may yield fruit as we are looking forward to seeing more coming to George Whitefield College.
The academic year has ended successfully, and I thank God that He had given me the strength to cope with the situation in my new environment. I managed to catch up with my studies, despite the fact I was [unavoidably] late [one term].
Pray for me that God may continue to shape my academic and spiritual growth as well as we prayer for you.
May God bless you all!
Please do continue to pray for John, particularly as South Sudan is in a state of unrest, and that in the future, he would be able to go back to South Sudan to strengthen pastors there. Pray that finances would be provided for more South Sudanese faculty at Bishop Gwynne College, to train further at George Whitefield College.