Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
Ample greetings to you in the precious name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who shed his blood on the cross for our redemption! On behalf of the Evangelical Covenant Church of South Sudan (ECCSS) Administration Office and the entire congregations of ECCSS, I would like to send my enormous gratitude to the leadership of the Evangelical Covenant Church of America for the strongest and unwavering support, love, and commitment that has been demonstrated to the people of South Sudan through ECCSS leadership and congregations.
I offer my heartfelt thanks to Evangelical Covenant Church congregations and members in the USA who are working vigorously to save and transform the lives of the people and support the expansion of ECC mission in the fragile state of South Sudan through World Mission and Covenant World Relief. Your support saves and transforms the lives of the needy people and those who are suffering daily in South Sudan.
The ongoing conflict in South Sudan killed 32 Covenanters and wounded more than 15 persons who are members of the ECCSS. In Malakal, it has destroyed major economic assets of ECCSS, such as 11 business shops that used to generate incomes for the ECCSS, the ECCSS farm, the Vulnerable and Orphaned Children (VOC) project center, and boats.
In Bentiu, it destroyed the two classrooms of Good Hope Academy building. It has destroyed five church buildings and aborted the ECCSS boreholes projects in Paliau, Pajut, and Fangak.
The conflict has displaced and scattered all the ECCSS leaders and caused the relocation of the headquarters from Malakal to Gambella in western Ethiopia. The situation is horrible, dire, and awful.
The extent of the damages and loss caused by ongoing conflict against the ECCSS is not yet assessed due to lack of peace and fragility of the situation in the country. There is no movement of the civil population, and the war is still going on despite the peace deal signed by the two warring parties.
The ECCSS Administration Office is asking your esteemed office to pray for the following challenges and problems facing the ECCSS and the people of South Sudan.
- Pray for the 32 members of the Covenant Church who have perished due to ongoing conflict in South Sudan. Pray for their widows, widowers, orphans, and relatives, especially for the five Covenanters who were killed in the recent violence that took place in Malakal, South Sudan.
- Pray for the safety and the lives of the ECCSS members who are still facing death threats in congested and unsecure United Nation camps in Malakal, Juba, Bentiu, Bor, and Wau in South Sudan.
- Pray for the ECCSS church leaders who are safeguarding their flocks in United Nation mission camps. Pray for Rev. Philip Kay Lul in Malakal, pray for Rev. Simon Nguany Biel in Bentiu, pray for Rev. John Dang in Juba, and pray for Rev. Peter Puot Ruach in Bor.
- Pray for the people of South Sudan who are suffering in the refugee camps in the neighboring countries.
- Pray for the Gambella region in western Ethiopia that is affected by the conflict of South Sudan.
- Pray for the South Sudan peace agreement that was signed in August 2015 by the two warring principals and constantly violated by both sides. Pray for permanent peace to return to the people of South Sudan.
- Pray for the safety of ECCSS leaders who are working vigorously for peace, reconciliation, and helping the desperate communities in the war ravaged state.
- Pray for forgiveness, peace, and reconciliation among the polarized tribes of South Sudan. The ECCSS is now among the leading churches in South Sudan which are pursuing peace and reconciliation. Pray for the people who are conveying the message of peace and reconciliation.
- Pray for 183 orphans and unaccompanied minors under the Vulnerable and Orphaned Children (VOC) project that is being sponsored by Covenant World Relief in four centers in Akobo, South Sudan, Gambella and Kule refugee camps in Ethiopia, and Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya.
- Pray for ECCSS leadership to cope with and bear the challenges it faces in the diaspora in Ethiopia.
- Pray for the family of two ECCSS pastors, Rev. Jacob Pal Puol and Rev. Elijah Mayul Wan, who passed away with sickness last year in 2015. Their kids are enrolled under the VOC project.
- Pray for all Christians and missionaries in South Sudan whose lives are being threatened.
- Pray for those who are supporting the ECCSS and people of South Sudan to remain strong and healthy.
- Pray for the family of Rev. James Tang, the missionary of the Evangelical Covenant Church of South Sudan and Ethiopia.
Rev. Abraham Tuach Kiir