Please pray for peace and justice in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

September 26, 2016

Congolese security forces clashed with demonstrators in the nation’s capital, Kinshasa, on Monday reportedly killing dozens. Further protests erupted in Kinshasa and around the country over the next several days. These seem likely to continue—or even intensify—as President Joseph Kabila nears the end of his second term of office without calling a national election to choose his successor.

According to the Congolese Constitution, the presidential campaign period must begin no later than three months before the end of the president’s term. President Kabila’s current five-year term expires December 20, 2016, so the fact that the state election commission, the Commission Electorale Nationale Indépendante, has not yet announced an election date or the commencement of the campaign period implies that President Kabila intends to remain in office beyond the constitutionally defined term limit.

Congolese government officials have been hinting for months that elections might not happen on schedule. They have cited logistical and financial obstacles and have also argued that a national census must be held before the next election. Meanwhile, the opposition Rassemblement platform has been organizing demonstrations to demand that President Kabila comply with the constitution and step down by December 20.

Presbyterian World Mission’s global partners in the DR Congo, the Presbyterian Community of Congo (CPC) and the Presbyterian Community of Kinshasa (CPK), minister to people of all political persuasions, as does the Protestant umbrella organization the Church of Christ in Congo (ECC), of which both Presbyterian Communities are part. These large and dynamic communities of faith are committed to peace and democracy, but must also negotiate a volatile security situation. The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has 10 mission co-workers based in the DR Congo, primarily in the cities of Kinshasa and Kananga.

Please pray for

  • peace and justice for the people of the DR Congo, that they will have meaningful opportunities to express their political will effectively;
  • our partners and mission co-workers in the CPC, CPK, and ECC as they work to promote peace and reconciliation in times of uncertainty; and
  • wisdom, humility, and righteousness to prevail among the DR Congo’s political leaders.

A Prayer for the People of the Congo

God of our coming,
God of our going,
God present in times of tranquility,
and God who sustains us during uncertain days,
we pray for the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
We pray for the people, for our partners, for our mission co-workers,
and for the country’s leaders.
Strengthen the relationships within the country
so that peace might prevail even in these days
when a scheduled election is neither called nor held;
and violence flares as protests crescendo and security forces respond.

Inspire the leaders to ensure that
the constitution and the rule of law are upheld,
and a transparent process is designed and implemented
to hold dialogue that leads to fair and free elections
in which the Congolese people express their will.
Guide the nations of the world
to respond in helpful ways. 

God present in times of tranquility,
and God who sustains us during uncertain days,
may justice flow like living waters
and peace prevail
in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Through Jesus Christ we pray. Amen.

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