“Christians, Muslims called to tear down walls raised out of fear”: South Sudanese Prelate

Archbishop Stephen Ameyu of Juba Archdiocese, South Sudan.

As Muslims celebrate Eid, marking the end of their holy month of Ramadan, the Archbishop of Juba in South Sudan has called on Christians and Muslims in the country to reach out to each other, breaking down barriers erected out of “fear and ignorance.”

“We as Christians and Muslims are called to open ourselves to others, knowing and recognizing them as brothers and sisters,” Archbishop Stephen Ameyu said Friday, May 22.

“We can tear down walls raised out of fear and ignorance and seek together to build bridges of friendship that are fundamental for the good of all humanity,” Archbishop Ameyu added.

The South Sudanese Prelate was addressing journalists in South Sudan’s capital, Juba, a press conference convened to convey his best wishes for Muslims in the country as they celebrate Eid.

In building bridges of friendship, he said, Christians and Muslims “can cultivate in their families and in political, civil and religious institutions, a new way of life where violence is rejected, and the human person respected.”


He recognized the centrality of “peace” and mutual “understanding” in Christianity and Islam saying, “Our religions invite us to remain rooted in the values of peace; to defend the values of mutual understanding, human fraternity and harmonious co-existence; to reestablish wisdom, love, justice and peace.”

Muslims across East and West Africa celebrated the post-Ramadan fete of Eid-ul-Fitr Saturday, May 23 amid COVID-19 restrictions, which suspended public gatherings including accessing places of worship.

563 cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in South Sudan with 6 recoveries and 6 deaths according to statistics from Worldometers.

During the May 22 press conference, Archbishop Ameyu went on to encourage Muslims in his country to “continue advancing the culture of inter-religious dialogue as a means of cooperation as a method of growing in the knowledge of one another.”

“Dialogue must seek to promote every person’s right to life, to physical integrity, and to fundamental freedoms,” the 56-year-old Prelate said and added in reference to fundamental freedoms, “This includes the freedom to live according to one’s beliefs in both the private and public spheres.”

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“It is my wish that this message of human fraternity will find an echo in the hearts of all those holding positions of authority in the areas of social and civil life of the whole human family,” the Archbishop said, calling for an attitude of tolerance and peaceful living in the country is gradually emerging from a protracted civil conflict.

“Christians and Muslims as brothers and sisters in South Sudan can work together for the common good,” Archbishop Ameyu concluded.