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Today in the Mission Yearbook

Minute for Mission: International Day of Farmers’ Struggles


 April 17, 2019

In South Sudan, nearly 6.1 million were severely food insecure in 2018, with 1.7 million people living on the edge of famine. Civil war has been raging there since 2013, destroying homes, lives and livelihoods. As people have had to flee their homes to escape violence, they have also had to abandon their fields and farming activities.

South Sudanese women are typically in charge of securing food for the household. As women are obliged to travel further and further into remote locations in search of food and firewood for the family, they often encounter gender-based violence on their journey. And some women have no other choice but to trade sex for food. Sixty-five percent of South Sudanese women and girls experience physical and/or sexual violence in their lifetime.

Fortunately, there are individuals and organizations that are working to improve food security and women’s safety despite the challenges. Our grant partner Hope Restoration South Sudan is working to empower women and girls through farming. Women and girls are provided with seeds and tools, and trained in farming, record keeping, food processing, post-harvest management and gender-based violence prevention. Providing women with access to land and the necessary tools and skills to produce food at home liberates them from many of the safety risks posed by food insecurity.

Eileen Schuhmann, Mission Specialist for International Hunger Concerns, Presbyterian Hunger Program

Today’s Focus:  International Day of Farmers’ Struggles

Let us join in prayer for: 

PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff

Vaughn Ratliff, ASG
Rebecca Rayner, ASG

Let us pray:

Gracious God, we pray for those who put their bodies on the line to feed themselves, their families and their communities. We give you thanks for the reunification of your people with the land and the tools necessary for their nourishment. We ask that you continue to strengthen the bodies and souls of those who farm as they struggle for peace and dignity. We pray also that you give us the courage to stand in solidarity with them in their struggles. Amen.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Wednesday, April 17, 2019, the Wednesday of Holy Week (Year C)