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Fresh clashes in South Sudan cancel Independence celebrations, but Bible work continues


Updated Friday 15 July 2016

** Urgent prayer request for South Sudan **

Head of Bible Society in South Sudan, Edward Kajivora says:

“Greetings from the confused Juba. I am sure you are aware of our situation here, but the Lord continues to sustain us. Many people have died but so far my staff are fine. Hunger, which is everywhere, is affecting the inhabitants of Juba.”

He says his staff are unable to go back to their offices, for fear of violence. Please join us in prayer for the people of South Sudan, and for peace in this country.


From Friday 8 July 2016

July 9 marks five years of South Sudan’s independence, when it broke away from Sudan after decades of conflict. But this year, the world’s youngest country has cancelled celebrations as it struggles to contain the civil war that has beleaguered the new state since 2013.

A tentative peace was established in April, when rebel leader Vice President Machar returned to the capital, Juba, after being in exile. He was sworn in as the first vice president of a new unity government with President Salva Kiir. But fresh fighting has broken out between militia forces, with reports that forces aren’t paying heed to either Kiir or Machar. Thousands more have fled, adding extra pressure to already packed refugee camps in the capital and surrounding areas.

There are also fears that the South Sudanese economy will collapse, amidst instability and an economy that relies heavily on oil exports.

Despite the tension, Bible Society in South Sudan – it too in its infancy – is still working to offer hope to a nation under threat. Head of Bible Society South Sudan, Edward Kajivora, reports that people are coming to faith in refugee camps and they are longing to read God’s Word to find hope and healing.

When Kajivora spoke to Bible Society Australia last month, the peace was holding. But he said the South Sudanese people live in a constant state of fear that violence will return. Just a day before what should be a great celebration, that fear is, once again, a reality.

“Today can be good, and tomorrow can change completely. Now things are calm, but something could be cooking underneath. It can explode at any time,” Kajivora said.

“But trouble brings people closer to God. We want to give people the Scriptures to remind them that, whatever happens, Christ is among them and God is always with them.”

Bible Society Australia is supporting Kajivora and the Bible Society in South Sudan, helping them distribute Bibles and start literacy classes among refugees.

“With your support, the Bible Society in South Sudan will be able to start training staff within the next two months, and prepare classroom materials for later this year,” said Bible Society Australia’s CEO Greg Clarke.

“Please pray for the world’s youngest nation, asking God to help the South Sudanese have something to celebrate when Independence Day comes around again next year.”

$42 can teach a refugee in South Sudan to read, and provide them with Scripture.

$84 can teach two refugees to read and give them each a Bible.

$156 can pay for a literacy class teacher.

Can you help? All donations are tax-deductible. 


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