News from the Church Mission Society
Happily, our Mission Partner, Lynn Treneary, has managed to get an e-mail letter out of Maridi to say that Maridi is peaceful, the surrounding areas have quietened down and the road to Yambio is safe. Sadly that is not true for Yei and the area around it. More of this below, but first, part of Lynn’s latest letter.
“My main focus this month has been getting MSF (Drs Without Borders) to come and assess and treat the burns victims from the petrol tanker explosion a year ago. They attended to 29 patients here but unfortunately there are 100 to 175 nearer to the explosion which was Faraksika, about an hour’s drive (40km) away, who were unable to get here because the road is too unsafe. Motorbikes would have brought them in convoy but at SSP2000 (about $20) a round trip it was unaffordable. I am waiting for the report from MSF on the patients they did see so that we can at least apply (somewhere) for antibiotics and bandages etc and then find a way to get it to them.
“People are still dying from infections a year after the event. I’m applying to ICRC ( Red Cross) to try and get those who need plastic surgery out to Egypt. It’s a tall order but God is my Father.
“Chaima is going well if somewhat lacking in money for tutors and food. We are still trying to persuade the internet server co. to come and fix the internet. (Editor: Lynn still has no internet connection so cannot send e-mails, nor receive those we send to her) But the lessons are going well. I have started a group for adults wanting to learn to read and write in Juba Arabic. They had originally come to learn English and thought they could read but unfortunately they have only learnt how to write and cannot read what they have written. It is a common problem with over 100 pupils in a class that some slip through the teacher’s net.
“Money for food is short and some extra that has been sent to provide food for the children has had to be spent on new pit latrines as the old ones fell down. As you can imagine, with around 100 school children around, a toilet is a priority. My watchman Matthew is building the new one. I am so happy to have helpers around the house. They are called “watch men” (I have two who do one week on and one week off) because they do guard the place but they do so much more, including helping the wider community. This week they helped to re-build the car-port whose tin-roof was threatening to fall on top of the car because the wood posts had been eaten, they helped to prepare the guest house for MSF coming and dig the latrine! This week I hope they will raise the hen-house up higher as cats keep getting in and stealing the little ones.
“I am aware that we are in some kind of protective dome of the Lord, but all around me things are not so great and I ask you to pray about that too as I’m sure you do. I want to say I think of myself as ‘we’ not just me. I am we. The Lord showed me I am one of many with you on this mission, all kneeling before the throne.”
As mentioned at the start of this article, the situation around Yei is very bad. 100 orphans en route to Uganda have been trapped by the fighting and several hundred more are reported trapped in Yei. All roads are blocked in and out of the city, schools, health centres, and markets are not working and no one can get to their crops to tend them. A convoy was attacked on the Yei to Juba road in mid October and 21 people including 5 women and 15 children were killed It is reported that the gunmen divided the travellers by ethnic group and shot all those who were not of the gunmen’s group, including the children. The roads around Juba and Yei are all unsafe, there is looting and burning of crops and livestock killed in areas that were once known as the bread basket of South Sudan. 1868 cases of Cholera were recently reported in Juba. The church in South Sudan is working hard to bring reconciliation and peace. Do pray for them.
Our CMS Prayer Group meets every third Wednesday in the month. We would love more to join us in this mission of prayer. If you can come, even occasionally, you will be very welcome. As a church we have promised to support Lynn and the work of CMS in the world, and we know that our loving Lord wants his people to pray and he will answer in amazing ways beyond our imagining
For more information about CMS contact Joan Plumptre 243 388
News from Matt and Liz Wisbey
“The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.” Psalm 24:1
While many of us believe the above is true, sadly the reality in our world today looks very different. There is much beauty and wonder, but also much destruction and pain. The condition of our planet should be a concern for us all, yet there seems to be a growing disconnect between the environment in which we live and our individual and collective well-being. Somehow, somewhere along the way, we have lost sight of the importance of the planet’s health for our own health.
The world’s climate is changing, and it is now almost unanimously agreed that this is as a result of human actions. The effect of these changes cannot be underestimated, as we see extreme ‘natural’ disasters happening more frequently and with increased devastation. These changes will ultimately impact us all, both directly and indirectly, but the communities who will be (and already are being) most strongly affected are those living on the margins, the communities we support through language, education and development activities.
Believe it or not, finding and supporting ways for these communities to increase their resilience to the changing environment and climate is part of Matt’s work with LEAD Asia (Language, Education And Development Asia). As a team, LEAD Asia is committed to working with linguistic minority communities across Asia to see their lives transformed through right relationships with God, with themselves, within their communities, with others outside their community, and with the environment. As the verse at the top of this letter says, we believe EVERYTHING in the world is God’s and that real transformation will only be seen when people recognise and respond in ways that respect and reflect this.
Within LEAD Asia, Matt currently heads up a small team with a particular focus on finding ways for communities to use their languages and culture to find creative solutions to the range of problems they face in their daily lives. One way is to integrate environmental issues and responses into education programmes, and Matt and his colleague were recently at a large multilingual education conference in Thailand presenting on this topic.
Matt is also responsible for coordinating a communications team at the event and, afterwards, pulling together a publication summarizing the key themes from the conference. Please do remember him as he shares about the work LEAD Asia is doing and that through his conversations communities across Asia and beyond would be truly transformed.
For news of Matt and Liz Wisbey see http://wisbeys.blogspot.fr/
The Children’s Society
This is the month when The Children’s Society Boxes are opened. If you have a Box would you let me have it during November so that it can be emptied and the contents sent to the Society.
Your continued support for the Society is very much appreciated by them, and your gifts will assist them in carrying on with their excellent work with so many vulnerable children and young people in this country.
Please contact me if you wish me to collect your Box from you or let me have it at one of the services at Church.
Very many thanks.
Hazel Catling (242 355)