Even though there were reported cases of Covid-19 in our region about 3 months ago, not much is known now with regards to how many cases there are in this region. We are thankful, however, to note that we have not seen sick people with Covid-19 symptoms. Many people, especially children, die here every year because of Malaria, Typhoid fever, malnutrition, and hunger, not counting the number of people that die in the war. Because of this, Covid-19 is not feared. Life continues as usual in most parts of the country.
More than 900 Pastors turned up to our Pastors Conference in October 2019. Many of them had either ridden their bicycles or walked for distances greater than 70km. These pastors made several requests to us:
- That we built a repeater radio tower 88 km west of here so as to expand our coverage with the gospel message in those areas.
- That we increase the frequency of our conference or start some sort of a formal pastoral training program that would accommodate most of them.
- One of the pastors at the conference was the Chaplain at the military barracks. He requested that we hold several teaching sessions at the barracks – which we did immediately after the conference.
- The pastors also requested more resources, especially Bibles in Dinka.
Even under very tough economic challenges, these pastors collected the equivalent of more than $15,000 in South Sudanese Pounds to support our ministry here in Aweil. We praise God that He has answered many of these requests as we have been making them known to Him.
- The church gave us a big piece of land free of charge so we could build a radio station in Marial Bai (88km West of us).
- The military commanders agreed to transport our radio tower from the capital, Juba, to Marial Bai (more than 800km one way) where we are going to build the radio tower. What a joy to see the military involved in supporting God’s work.
- Our friends and partners, HeartCry Missionary Society, bought for the pastors here 1,100 Bibles, and we were able ship them from Wau to Aweil area, where we have been distributing them.
- We are translating the small booklet, ‘The Gospel of Jesus Christ’ by brother Paul Washer, into Dinka. We will print 1,200 copies this year so that we can distribute them to pastors and church leaders here. Most of the translation work has been done, but we are still in the editing process.
- That God will grow and mature His church here even in spite of the ongoing wars in many parts of this country.
- Pray that more resources will be availed to the church leaders here.
- As the church has given us land in Marial Bai, we will not only build a repeater station there, but we are praying that the Lord will enable us to build a pastor training center as well as a Christian library for the pastors. The church here is also willing to contribute towards that plan. We really want to encourage and develop a reading culture here in this country.
- Pray for the oncoming Pastors Conference in October this year.
- Pray for peace in this country.
S.R. previously served as Africa Coordinator in 2008. He and his brother, and their families served for almost three years as missionaries to the Lozi people of Western Zambia. Upon returning to the States, S.R. joined a church-planting work in West Virginia. S.R. and his family now live in Christiansburg, VA.More By S.R.