Our Mission Committee’s focus for April is on the countries of Sudan and South Sudan. Their flags will be displayed in our chancel throughout the month.
Life has been chaotic and difficult in both Sudan and South Sudan since the new nation of South Sudan was formed in 2011. But dramatic changes have occurred in the past few months. In the Sudan popular resistance has forced the end of the dictatorship and a new provisional government has been cause for encouragement. Significant changes have relieved pressure on the suffering church but these political improvements are fragile so please pray. In the South Sudan there has been on and off civil war since 2011, pitting tribal groups against each other. The leaders have exasperated the situation, but just in the past month another attempt at political agreement has been forged. Of course, it too is fragile and we must pray for the nation and church. The very serious problems of the past decade have made travel dangerous. But the courageous South Sudan Presbyterian Evangelical Church (SSPEC, our PCUSA partner) has boldly sent pastors to unstable areas to gather the scattered people into congregations. We have been able to assist this by sending funds for the pastors’ basic support and to pay for the metal roofs for buildings which they have built from local bricks. Your giving has enabled NWPC to be one of the major financial supporters of this important initiative.
Please pray for PCUSA mission coworkers located in South Sudan. Lynn and Sharon Kandle support SSPEC, Bob and Kristi Rice assist the church in training pastors, Jim and Jodi McGill work in water projects and nursing, Leisa Wagstaff is involved in education and trauma healing, Shelvis and Nancy Smith-Mathers support reconciliation work (while Shelvis does doctoral work at Oxford). The annual Sudan Mission Network meeting is scheduled for July 20–21 during New Wilmington Mission Conference where you can hear a lot more about our partners in the Sudan and South Sudan.