A dozen international peacemakers from 10 countries around the world will visit congregations and presbyteries of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) from Sept. 24-Oct. 18.
They will share their stories about church-based ministries in their countries that seek peace justice and pursue peace in the name of Jesus Christ. This year’s international peacemakers come from Bolivia, Central Asia, Colombia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Indonesia, Israel/Palestine, Mexico, Pakistan, the Philippines and Sudan.
The International Peacemaker program is sponsored by the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program.
The Rev. Orozu Lokine Daky and John Tubuwa Glouno Ngandoi serve the Presbyterian Church in Sudan. Daky is regional coordinator for the Serving and Learning Together (SALT) development agency, which equips churches and other organizations for economic and community development in southern Sudan. Tubuwa is director of the Presbyterian Church in Sudan’s Mission and Evangelism agency.
Where will you be going?
- Trinity Presbyery
- Westminster College, Penn.
- Mary Baldwin College, Va.
- Scioto Valley Presbytery
- Pittsburgh Presbytery
- Lehigh Presbytery
- Winnebago Presbytery
- Schreiner University, Fla.
- Genesee Valley Presbytery
- San Diego Presbytery
What is the situation in your country that you will be addressing?
Orozu Daky: "The main issue is continued advocacy for the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in Sudan, because without it the horror will return. We are also concerned for free and fair elections in January (2011). We are also concerned for Darfur. The presence of U.N. troops is not helping — the janjaweed (government-backed paramilitary) is even entering the U.N. camps and dragging people off. We don't want any more war — 2 million people have been lost and we don’t want to lose any more."
How are the faith communities (your’s in particular) addressing this situation?
Orozu Daky: "We are training and educating pastors and building clean water systems. We are teaching farming in the south, where cattle-rustling is a problem. When the people learn to farm, the conflicts over cattle will be reduced. Our Community Development Education program, with help from Trinity Presbytery recently treated 1,300 people for various medical conditions in five days. Seven others who needed surgery were transported to Kenya."
What lessons from your situation are you trying to communicate to U.S. Presbyterians?
John Tubuwa: "Most of the educated people in our country have been killed. We need people more than we need money. What are we going to do with money if we don’t have people to show us what to do with it?
What is the primary message you want to communicate to U.S. Presbyterians?
Orozu Daky: "The PC(USA) has been on our side for a long time. We need your continued prayers and advocacy for peace. More than money we want persons to come to be with us personally — teachers, doctors and nurses, builders — to help us build our country. We are not at war right now, so it is free and safe to come."