The Presbyterian Church USA released a letter calling on “all Presbyterians” to pray for the escalating humanitarian crisis in the Dafur region of Sudan and to contact their congressional representatives in stopping the genocide and ethnic cleansing in the region.
The letter, signed by the General Assembly Moderator Rick Ufford-Chase, General Assembly Stated Clerk Clifton Kirkpatrick, General Assembly Council Executive Director John Detterick and Worldwide Ministries Division Director Marian McClure, reminded the PC(USA) members of the “seriousness of the crisis” that has cost the lives of over two million people in the past twenty years.
“In Sudan over the last twenty years, a slow, yet sustained genocide has already been taking place. The Government of Sudan has systematically operated to clear large sections of Sudan of any inhabitants, practicing a “scorched earth” policy ending in the deaths of over two million people, with millions more being displaced,” the June 23 letter explained.
The letter also told the church members that the PC(USA) is in close contact with Christians in Sudan and that the history of the relationship stretches back more than 100 years.
The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has been closely connected to Sudan since the first Presbyterian missionaries were sent to Khartoum in 1901, over 100 years ago. Today, the PC(USA) continues to have a vibrant and growing ministry together with our Presbyterian and ecumenical partners there, which entails evangelism, theological training, women’s programs, youth work, prison ministries, basic education, and health care, along with many others,” they wrote. “There are three presbyteries of the PC(USA) in specific partner relations with Presbyterians in Sudan, and we have five mission personnel presently assigned there. Our partners in Sudan have clearly called on the PC(USA) to take action to bring peace and justice to this land”.
At that end, the PC(USA) leaders encouraged church members to bring a change to the dire situation by contacting the governmental representatives and to “pray for the people of Sudan.”
“You will see that it is critical that your voice be heard now regarding the question of genocide. Your support for our response to the ongoing needs of our partners is also needed into the future,” they wrote.
Following the release of the letter, the both the U.S. House and Congress passed the resolutions that dubbed the Sudanese conflict “genocide” – HR 467 and SR 124.
To view the entire letter of the PC(USA) leadership, please visit: www.pcusa.org