Hi to all our Prayer Partners
Many thanks for all your prayers over the past few months for our work in the Sudan. We are now in the UK at the beginning of a tour to visit family, friends and promote our work in our sponsoring Diocese of Salisbury. We can tell you your prayers are producing powerful results. We appreciate the love and support you are giving us.
Trevor and Tina
1. The bank situation. Whilst SUDRA and other dioceses and agencies in Southern Sudan that have assets in the Nile Commercial Bank still find them frozen, our difficulties in Bishop Gwynne College have been overcome and we find ourselves better off than we had at first imagined. As the arrangements with SUDRA fell through, we reverted to the idea of selling the property on the open market. It had been valued at 275,000 Sudanese pounds but we managed to sell it for SDG350,000 (SDG75,000 more than we had anticipated!). This means that we have been able to clear all our debts and have some capital in the pot with which to begin the new project. So:
- We give thanks for the successful sale that has relieved us of the debt.
- We continue to pray for SUDRA (the Sudan Development & Relief and Agency of the ECS), the Mothers' Union, The Diocese of Yei and others in the church, and all those with funds locked up in the Nile Commercial Bank.
- We thank God that this situation has not taken away the opportunity of the new site.
2. BGC Handing Over Committee. We rejoice in the encouragement this has given to the members of the Handing Over Committee now bringing their work to a conclusion.
3. Robin Denney and her agricultural projects.
- We thank God for the new garden that Robin has just begun developing outside our house as a demonstration site for the province. £100 of the money given by the people of Bridport has gone into this.
- The moringa seeds have produced several small trees that seems to thrive in the Juba climate.
- Thank God for the commencement of her workshops which have been been very successful. Pray that there will be more opportunities, and the funding for her transport.
4. Our Archbishop.
- Thank God for the great energy, courage and vision. The huge difference his visit with those who went with him to Rumbek, Lainya and especially Jonglei State where there has been tribal conflict.
- We thank God he and his team have been to areas that no bishop has ever visited before and the tremendous way he has been received.
- We rejoice in the continued stream of new members across the whole province.
1. The former BGC staff. The final pieces of the former regime at BGC are now being removed. Please continue to pray for the former members of staff now being paid off. Thank God that all that is owed them from the past - much of it going back to 2007 when they did not receive all of their salaries. We thank God that we are in a position to pay them all six months salary as severance pay and also pay for them and their families to be transported by to their ancestral homes where they can establish new lives on their tribal lands if they wish. We pray that their experience and understanding can continue to be used for the work of the church in the Sudan.
2. The new Bishop Gwynne College.
- Pray that we may quickly get the agreements necessary within the ECS for the demarcation of the new site.
- Pray that the money (US$ 220,000) needed for the clearing and fencing of the site, repairing the existing buildings and putting up new ones and all the basic requirements may soon be found.
- Pray that a US$1 million capital development fund will be quickly forthcoming.
- Pray for the meeting of the heads of the provincial theological colleges in Juba on 8th July with a representative from Limuru and the UK and US to discuss curricula and development issues. Pray that suitable accommodation for the meeting will be identified.
- Pray that we can begin the search for staff for the new college.
- Pray those considering the founding of an agricultural training institute in Southern Sudan that will eventually be part of an expanded Bishop Gwynne University.
3. The Theological Education by Extension (TEE) programme. In July we shall be beginning a TEE programme in Juba that will be the prototype of that will go "on the road" around the dioceses. Each course will last three weeks and take half the whole programme based on the material produced by Andy Wheeler and others.
- Prayer for the Archbishop and those setting up the course in Juba for when we return in July.
- Pray for the pastors and army chaplains as they are approached or come forward to do the course (five 2 hours evening sessions per week over the three weeks).
- Pray for ourselves and those who will be engaged as tutors for the Juba sessions.
- Pray for a suitable venue for those involved in Juba.
- Pray for that we can find suitable people to begin a rolling programme that will take the courses through all of the dioceses in the province.
- Pray for the financing of the course. With give thanks for Trinity Parish in New York who are financing the programme this year.
4. Peace and security. The situation in the Sudan is delicate. There are powerful elements in the north that are seeking to destabilise the south (and are allied to those causing trouble right across the Sudan and neighbouring states). There is traditional tribal conflict in the south that manifests itself in cattle theft and associated killings, and outlaw bands (like the LRA) that lead to reprisals and displacement.
- Pray for the National Government of Sudan, the Government of Southern Sudan (GOSS), the state governments and local commissioners.
- Pray for the police and the army that they may be empowered to operate effectively and fairly in enforcing law and order.
- Pray for the churches, pastors, and bishops as they preach the Gospel of peace among the people and the impact that Christianity has in overcoming traditional tribal differences and customs that are detrimental to inter-tribal peace. We ask God's protection for the Archbishop and other church leaders as they proclaim the Kingdom with authority and courage.
- May God's Kingdom come on Earth as it is in Heaven.
5. Our Visit to England.
- Pray for all those we shall meet in the committees, deliberations and consultations with individuals about our work.
- Pray for our public events (see on the blog).
- Please pray for us as we meet with family and friends.
6. Juba & Lainya Cathedrals, and all the other places needing new and larger places of worship.
- Pray for the finance required for the necessary expansion of All Saints' Cathedral, Juba to accommodate all who wish to attend worship there, so that the unedifying scramble for seats on a Sunday morning can be overcome.
- Pray that the finance for a new cathedral in Lainya may be found quickly so that a building of the right size can be built on the site just dedicated by the Archbishop. The fund raising has begun. We have committed the Deanery of Lyme Bay (with special links with this diocese) to £500. Pray that the folk of that Deanery will be happy with our commitment on their behalf as they was no opportunity to consult in advance!!