Don't Forget Sudan's Persecuted Christians
October 1, 2003 - If you spent a night in southern Sudan—as I did recently on a trip with Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist—you would be awed by the peace and quiet. It's easy to forget for a moment that you are in the middle of a civil war with battle trenches and artillery as near as a one-day march.
by Franklin Graham
If you spent a day at the Lui Hospital developed by Samaritan's Purse, you would be moved by examples of compassion, expertise, goodwill and trust. It's hard to imagine that if the current cease-fire fails, our work could be wiped out in a matter of hours.
Thankfully, you don't have to go to Africa to intervene.
In the face of persecution, your prayers and influence are crucial. The Christians we met in southern Sudan are deeply grateful. Our support not only sustains them but also advances the Gospel of Jesus Christ. After two decades of war and two million deaths, good news goes a long way.
To the people of southern Sudan, Lui Hospital shows the love and power of Christ. It encourages those who are saved and attracts those who need to be. To international observers like Sen. Frist, the hospital shows the impact Christians can make. Frist, a surgeon, has visited the hospital regularly since 1998. He told us that each year he sees "milestones in a road of progress."
Christians have been the strongest voice for peace in Sudan. Our concerns were reflected in the Sudan Peace Act, passed by Congress and signed into law last October by President Bush.
Recently many Christians have focused their prayers and attention on the Middle East. Meanwhile, southern Sudan has suffered a troubling breakdown in peace negotiations and a frightening build-up of troops and weapons. If fighting resumes, the toll could be worse than ever before, and Christians are likely to suffer most.
Pray for peace—true peace—in southern Sudan and in other places where Christians are persecuted. True peace is more than a political treaty or military truce. True peace is found only in Jesus Christ, the Lord of lords and the King of kings. He assures us in John 16:33, "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world" (NIV).