August 22, 2017 Carrie Kintz

A War, A Hope, and the Mobile Messengers in South Sudan

PUSS O'Brien visit to South Sudan, 24-25 April 2012 (Jamam refugee camp). Hehlan Umdan, 23, a refugee from Sudan (far left, pink dress), in the Jamam camp in South Sudan. She has three children and has been in the camp since November 2011. Oxfam water distribution point.
Today we have a guest post from Brad Hobbs, Ministry Director of With Open Eyes. Brad shares his heart for the crisis in South Sudan and how the church here in America can help. 

In South Sudan, there should be a season of great celebration and feasting. Almost a decade ago independence from Sudanese rule was declared.

Yet there is a significant problem.

For the past 48 months, South Sudan has been crippled by a civil war that has displaced 3.6 million of its citizens. The estimated 11 million who still live in the country face the constant threat of starvation, rebel invasion, and displacement.

It has been anything but a celebration of independence.

A Fight for Independence

Governments, assemblies, and international relief organizations have worked the better half of a century to solve the problems in Sudan and South Sudan. Although beneficial, the ongoing conflicts present the reality that neither Sudanese independence nor billions of dollars in aid will solve the long-term issues in South Sudan.

With Open Eyes strongly believes in independence. We heavily participate in humanitarian aid, but we also believe getting the good news of Jesus to every person is the greatest hope a country has. It is why With Open Eyes has mobilized messengers in South Sudan since its birth. And why we will do whatever is necessary to accelerate the gospel to the parts of the world that are war-torn, forgotten, and underserved.

Over the past 6 years, With Open Eyes has equipped 88 Mobile Messengers in South Sudan to accelerate the Gospel getting to the Sudanese people. Through the leadership of Pastor Sosthen we have seen and been able to report back the stories of extraordinary life change.

The Impact of War on Mobile Messengers

A civil war has swept across the cities of South Sudan. Many Mobile Messengers have been displaced to refugee camps and the surrounding areas. Pastor Sosthen now resides in the Kiryandongo refugee camp in Uganda where he is continuing his ministry to reach people and build God’s church.

With the displacement of Pastor Sosthen and the other Mobile Messengers, we have currently lost contact with 69 of the 88 Messengers working in South Sudan. We trust that the displacement of the Mobile Messengers is a Divine dispersing. We pray God is using it to share the hope of Jesus through His messengers in refugee camps and villages we have yet to reach.

In the days to come, we will continue to equip Messengers to quicken the sharing of the gospel in refugee camps, South Sudan, and the underserved nations of the world. We are also working and praying for the opportunity to reconnect with the Mobile Messengers who have been dispersed to hear of what all God has done.

How You Can Help

Please join us in praying the following things:

  • We pray for peace and healing for the nation of South Sudan.
  • We pray for safety and for the courage of our Mobile Messengers that have been dispersed from their homes and churches.
  • We pray for the good news of Jesus to penetrate South Sudan and the refugee camps surrounding it. We ask God to do the miraculous in the middle of a devastating war.

If the crisis in South Sudan impacted you, would you consider donating to With Open Eyes? We’re raising money to equip pastors and Mobile Messengers like Pastor Sosthen with everything from backpacks to audio Bibles, to motorbikes. Even $5 makes a huge difference. Find out how here