Hope for the future of Sudan

Jan. 9, 2011, will be a critical date in the history of Sudan. The people of south Sudan will finally be given the right to vote on becoming their own nation.

Jan. 9, 2011, will be a critical date in the history of Sudan. The people of south Sudan will finally be given the right to vote on becoming their own nation. This date marks the end of a six year Comprehensive Peace Keeping Agreement between the people of the south and the national government, based out of Khartoum in the north. Please pray for independence and a peaceful election.

The cost of continuing conflict and bloodshed has been horrendous in the recent 20-year history of this African nation: two million Sudanese killed and another four million forcefully displaced from their homeland and scattered around the world. Our western world largely lives in ignorance to these appalling facts.

The corrupt government of north Sudan continues to value wealth and power more than it values people. The oil rights of the south continue to be more important than the human rights of the south. This corrupt and aggressive government is headed by President Omar al-Bashir, who is also wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of war crimes in the western Sudanese region of Darfur.

The atrocities committed by this government have been coined ‘tribal conflict’ by a global community that has historically chosen to do nothing. As the south becomes its own country, these atrocities of murder, rape, mutilation and kidnapping will properly be termed war!

I invite you to attend a weekend of prayer for the nation of Sudan. Join us on Saturday in Calgary (Sudanese Mennonite Brethren Fellowship at 2 p.m.) and in Red Deer on Sunday (Fountain of Life Apostolic House at 3 p.m., 22 Kelloway Cres.).

This is an opportunity to come together to encourage and pray with these new Canadians. The Jan. 9 referendum has the potential to result in escalated conflict.

Our Sudanese neighbors have serious concerns for the safety of loved ones back home.

Let’s show our support through prayer and coming together for a deeper sense of community.

Rick Graber

Lacombe