Saturday, April 13
Republic of the Sudan
You think that we have problems? Consider our sisters and brothers in the Sudan Presbyterian Evangelical Church. Under the British mandate, Sudan was divided administratively into the north (with an Arab and mostly Muslim population) and the south (mostly African and animist). In 1956, when Sudan became independent, these two parts were brought together, but the political power was lodged in the north. Southerners, who were rapidly becoming Christians, were oppressed. When the south voted to form a separate country in July 2011, the problems did not go away; they simply changed and intensified.
With the creation of the Republic of South Sudan, Christians in the north face serious difficulties. Southerners who have lived in the north for 30–40 years are now considered “foreigners” and at risk. Christians who have citizenship in the north (Darfurians, Nuba, Arab, etc.) are persecuted, as the Khartoum government continues to press its agenda of Islamization.
It is hard to imagine what will have happened by the time you read this, but it is certain that the prayers of the world Christian community for Christians in Sudan are very much in order. Believers of many backgrounds in the Sudan Presbyterian Evangelical Church are living in great turmoil because of the political and economic changes. We well know that they are an essential part of the body of Christ (1 Cor. 12). We in the PC(USA) often forget that we are only one part of the body, and not necessarily the most important part. Having lived through a half-century of decline, we turn to the dynamic parts of the body of Christ, including the Sudan, looking to how their vital witness might be God’s instrument of reevangelizing the West.
Let us join in prayer for:
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 • Gerief Bible School, (Khartoum), Rev. Daniel Hammad, principal • Nile Theological College (Malakal and Khartoum): Rev. Thomas Maluit Hoth, principal • 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
Merciful God, we pray that by your Holy Spirit you might awaken us to what you are doing in the Sudan. We plead for Sudanese Christians before the throne of grace. We look to them as an example of perseverance. Mold us together as parts of the body of Christ, in whose name we pray. Amen.