Training center, schools burned in southern Sudan

( [email protected] ) Apr 01, 2004 03:06 AM EST

On March 30, Vicar Scott Yakimow, serving with LCMS World Mission in East Africa, received a report that fighting led by the Sudanese government allied militia in the Papwojo area of the Shilluk Kingdom in southern Sudan led to the March 18 burning of a mission training center and two primary schools-work supported by LCMS World Mission.

“The problems that are being faced by these people are enormous,” said Yakimow. “There have been reports of people starving in the bush, while the harvest is left to rot in the fields.”

Reverend John Amuch, the only staff member at the training center, sent the report via radio to Yakimow on March 24. Amuch said that the fighting also resulted in the loss of 305 houses and the lives of eight civilians in Papwojo. “Community properties were completely looted,” Amuch said.

Yakimow added that there are five Lutheran congregations in the area in addition to the training center and two schools. He also said that an estimated 122,000 people--about 50 percent of the population in the region--are now displaced from their villages by the operations of the government of Sudan and its allied militia forces.