Abyei town there were 6 churches before 2011. This particular ECS church had about 800 members before it was burnt for the third time by the Arabs from North Sudan on 20th May 2011. Slowly the South Sudanese have been returning but experienced a real setback last year when in May 2013 the paramount chief of all the Dinka’s in Abyei was travelling with a UN convoy to discuss the conflict.
The convoy was surrounded by Arabs with guns demanding they hand over the chief. After 4 hours of negotiation the Arabs shot the chief. All the guns have been taken away from the South Sudanese by the UN but they do not take the guns from the Arabs. Why is this?
The Christians still started to gather again in Abyei town and rebuild the church and two little church houses for the pastor and others. There were up to about 130 people meeting in this church but 3 weeks ago the Arabs came again into the town with their guns and shot 140 South Sudanese. 20 members were killed from this church. Why does the UN allow the Arabs to carry guns but not the South Sudanese? Even after this latest incident the believers are still meeting in this small church to worship the Lord.
The church leadership in Abyei is very strong, very active and completely united in the face of this persecution. They asked us to please remember them but particularly could we help them with income generating projects to earn money so they can rebuild the church and help the community.