Friday, April 12
Republic of South Sudan, continued
Greeted by singing and dancing, we were transported into a churchyard where 30 women quickly surrounded us, put us in chairs, and began to lovingly wash our feet. That was my introduction to the women attending the Women’s Leadership Conference in Renk, South Sudan. That was the beginning of a week full of love, laughter, and overflowing baskets. How many loaves do I have? Too many to fit in the basket!
Since arriving in South Sudan, I have discovered my basket may continue to grow, but it is never too heavy to carry.
Each stop along this journey has added to the loaves I carry. Akobo welcomed me with open arms. Two pilots refused to take no for an answer and evacuated me. Two pastors welcomed me with smiles in Juba and put me safely on a plane to Malakal. I was met by more smiling faces and a mission co-worker who opened her home to me.
Two meters of a flowing, silky, flowered cloth called a luwalla, the traditional dress here, keep the loaves piling up. The people laugh and “fix” me (dress me) as I walk to market or to church. I spent an afternoon learning traditional dancing, because I was wearing their dress. Two churches have welcomed me, and I have learned the value of sharing three cups of tea in building relationships and learning culture.
Each stop has added to my loaves, and my basket is overflowing. How many loaves do you have? I pray that your basket overflows as well.
—Elder Sharon Curry, PC(USA) mission co-worker, Akobo, South Sudan
Let us join in prayer for:
Presbyterian Church of South Sudan (PCOSS): Rev. Peter Gai Lual Marrow, moderator, Rev. David Obdalla, vice moderator, Rev. John Yor Nyiker, general secretary • Presbyterian Relief and Development Agency (PRDA), Rev. James Makuie, director • Giffen Institute of Theology (GIT), Malakal, Rev. Gideon Tai Tudeal • Sudan Presbyterian Evangelical Church (SPEC): Synod leadership—Rev. Yahya Abdelrahim Nalu, chairman, Rev. Indraous Matra, vice chairman, Rev. Barbary Omer, secretary; Presbytery and church department leadership—Elder Dr. Dawood Bashir, Rev. Mikadi Mahmoud, Elder Kobia Osman • Nile Theological College (Malakal and Khartoum): Rev. Thomas Maluit Hoth, principal • Across: Rev. Bernard Suwa, director • Resource Centre for Civil Leadership (RECONCILE): Rev. Peter Tibi, executive director • Sudan Council of Churches: Rev. Ramadan Chan, general secretary
Presbytery Partnerships: Trinity Presbytery, with the PCOSS; Presbytery of Redstone and Presbytery of Shenango, with the SPEC
Let us pray
Thank you, God, for the loaves you provide in our lives. I pray that you continue to bless the people of South Sudan as they grow and develop into the country you have planned for them. We ask that your mercy and peace be poured out on them. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.