17 May 2008

Martyrs of Sudan

The Christian bishops, chiefs, commanders, clergy and people of southern Sudan declared, on May 16, 1983, that they would not abandon God as God had revealed himself to them through the Scriptures, even though they were under threat of Shariah Law imposed by the fundamentalist Islamic government in Khartoum. The Christians of the Sudan suffered from persecution and devastation through twenty-two years of civil war. Two and a half million people were killed. Many clergy and lay leaders were singled out because of their religious leadership in their communities. No buildings, including churches and schools, were left standing in an area the size of Alaska. God, however, always has a plan when his people endure persecution. When the Martyrdoms began, only five percent of the population of southern Sudan was Christian. Today, more than eighty percent of the same area has converted to the Christian faith. This faith in Jesus, rooted deeply in the message of God’s mercy and love, has renewed their spirits through out the years of strife and sorrow.

Prayer of the Day
Lord God,
you who will not be defeated
and who is steadfast in the midst of persecution,
by your providence the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church.
Grant that we
who remember before you the blessed martyrs of the Sudan,
may, like them, be steadfast in our faith in Jesus Christ,
whom they refused to abandon,
even in the face of death.
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God,
now and ever,
and unto ages of ages.


All original material (C) 2007-2010 by Father Robert Lyons.

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