A couple of weeks ago we asked for prayer for a special training of Sudanese pastors and children’s ministers who are called tor reach some 300,000 elementary-age children in refugee camps. Now they’re equipped with the Life on Life children-at-risk curriculum (whole life discipleship – life skills, character development, spiritual formation… soul care), and ready to go. Here is the report.
North and South Sudan are countries of great misery. Civil war, famine, religious persecution, genocide and atrocities of all kinds against civilians have kept mass groups of people living in fear and on the run.
For four days, David C Cook African staff in partnership with Go Ye Africa in Kenya, and the Anglican Church of Uganda, held a special Children-at-Risk training for Sudanese ministers from 15 churches and 5 denominations. Individuals represented 7 regions of South Sudan (Juba, Eastern Equatorial, Western Equatorial, Morobo Central, Kajikeg, Lanya and Yei). These believers labor in poor, remote communities and areas surrounding refugee camps. Their unified goal is to train other lay leaders in an effort to reach all 300,000 children living in camps with Children-at-Risk material.
The training was held in South Sudan. The region is rife with violence, unrest, and poverty. The pastors traveled to the meeting locations at great personal risk.
The church lacked security, stable electricity, cell phone and internet service, but David C Cook African staff member, Simeon Havyarimana, reported that all had a exhilarating, peaceful, and much needed time of fellowship. And each leader learned how to care for the hearts of children who’ve faced trauma or who are at risk of trauma.
Simeon had this to say:
What a joy to be part of David C Cook. It was a brave but needed initiative to serve this community of South Sudan. It is deceiving to look at Sudan in terms of statistics and news we get in the newspapers and in the media. But I view this country as God’s given country where people reside whom Jesus loves. As we drove to South Sudan, a great majority of houses are huts, reflecting truly poor communities. In each of these huts, there are many more children than adults. Who will protect them against domestic abuse or violence in their communities? Who will minister to them? Who will save them and offer them biblical values and the skills to overcome their situations? These are the children David C Cook wants to reach. We can reach these children by joining forces with the churches in Southern Sudan.
Again, thank you for praying for the team of African leaders and participants. Each pastor and children’s minister returned home safely, encouraged, and equipped to reach needy children in their villages and in the refugee camps. Please continue to pray for their efforts.