Church in Sudan Declares 52-Week Prayer Initiative after Centenary of Missionary Service

Church leaders in Sudan have declared 2021 a year of prayer and thanksgiving after concluding celebrations to mark 100 years since Christian Missionaries first came to the Nuba Mountains in the North-eastern African countries.

In a prayer guide covering 52 weeks of prayer, the Church leaders, including those from the Catholic Church invite Christians from across the globe to join the initiative.

“2020 marked 100 years since missionaries first came to the Nuba Mountains. We want to celebrate what our God has done thus far, be awakened to what He is doing now, and prepare for what is to come,” the Church leaders say in a statement shared with ACI Africa.

They add, “As the Nuba church, we want to start this new century by drenching the land of the Nuba Mountains with prayer… We are committing to one year of focused prayer. We are calling the church body from around the world to join us in this effort. We believe we will see a plentiful harvest.”

The 52-week prayer initiative commenced January 1 this year and runs to December 31, the 32-page document detailing weekly themes alongside scriptural references and specific prayer intentions indicates.

To start a fresh wave of prayer in Nuba Mountains and prepare the hearts of the people of God in the Sudanese territory near and far, the church leaders have chosen to focus January 2021 prayer intention on the church and later pray for government leaders and peace-making processes in February.

The thematic areas of prayer focus from March to December include communities and villages, Nuba families, the education system in Nuba, infrastructure, and healthcare, displaced people from homelands, agriculture, spiritual strongholds and making disciples.  

Participants are invited to pray in their homes, in churches, out in nature and in set prayer rooms “as the Lord leads and guides.”

Those willing to share testimonies and messages of encouragement from prayer time or to ask questions throughout the year are invited to email [email protected]

Expressing optimism in the ongoing prayers, the Church leaders say, “We trust that we will see healing and hope flow in every village throughout Nuba, families and communities growing stronger and positive shifts in the political situation and relationship between the Nuba people and the Sudanese government.”

According to church leaders, 2021 prayer initiative “is an opportunity to sit and listen and get heavenly perspective on our daily struggles. Prayer is a creative time, where God speaks His purposes and grace. It is also a discipline and there are times when it is not easy.”

“Just like physical soil needs to be prepared before new seeds are planted each season, may this year of prayer prepare the spiritual soil for a new season of planting seeds of eternal life,” the leaders state in their 32-page document.

Many churches from all denominations in Nuba have been invited to take part in prayer in whatever capacity that they choose.  

The Nuba are a group of people who share a common geography in Sudan’s Southern Kordofan Province, known as Jebal al-Nuba or Nuba Mountains. Traditionally the Nuba are agriculturalists.

Until the Egyptian occupation of Sudan during the nineteenth century, most Nuba tribes lived relatively isolated. Their history was affected by the short but extremely violent rule of the Mahdi and his successor, and colonial rule by the British.

Sudan took its independence in 1956 and since the 1960s the Nuba have been at odds with their successive National governments.

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ACI Africa was officially inaugurated on August 17, 2019 as a continental Catholic news agency at the service of the Church in Africa. Headquartered in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, this media apostolate will strive to facilitate the telling of Africa’s story by providing media coverage of Catholic events on the African continent, giving visibility to the activities of the Church across Africa where statistics show significant growth in numbers and the continent gradually becoming the axis of Catholicism. This is expected to contribute to an awareness of and appreciation for the significant role of the Church in Africa and over time, the realization of a realistic image of Africa that often receives negative media framing.

Father Don Bosco Onyalla
Editor-in-Chief, ACI Africa
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