South Sudan’s Church Leaders Recommit to “prophetic stance against violence, injustice”

Logo South Sudan Council of Churches (SSCC). Credit: SSCC

Members of the South Sudan Council of Churches (SSCC) have, in a collective statement, expressed their recommitment to fostering “the gospel nonviolence” in the East-Central African nation, pledging to have “a prophetic stance against violence and injustice”.

In their statement shared with ACI Africa on March 16, SSCC members underscore the value of “the gospel of nonviolence”, saying it is an approach that can facilitate the realization of peace and justice in the world’s youngest nation.

“The Church of Christ in South Sudan through its individual members and the Council of Churches recommits itself to the gospel nonviolence,” South Sudan’s church leaders who include members of the Sudan/South Sudan Catholic Bishops’ Conference (SCBC) say.

SSCC say they “reject any form of violence and commit themselves to a prophetic stance against violence and injustice.”

Preaching the gospel of nonviolence is an active approach to ending violence and injustice in South Sudan, the church leaders say.


The gospel of nonviolence, “is not a passive approach”, they say, explaining that it is “not simply submitting to or colluding with violence, but is active and prophetic in responding to all forms of violence, amongst individuals, families, clans, tribes, and political and military factions, and including systemic violence embedded in our cultural, societal, and political life.”

In their two-page statement dated March 10, SSCC members go on to provide further details their understanding of the gospel of nonviolence.

Being deeper than simply avoiding war, SSCC members say, “nonviolence calls us to a new way of life which respects the dignity of every person and the integrity of creation.”

“Nonviolence names a core value of the Gospel, in which Jesus combined an unmistakable rejection of violence with the power of love and truth in action for justice and peace,” they add.

In combining the rejection of violence and fostering justice and peace through love and truth, the church leaders in South Sudan say, “We act as faithful disciples of Jesus our Lord to foster peace and justice in our beloved nation.”

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Separated from the Sudan Council of Churches (SCC) in 2013, two years after South Sudan gained independent from Sudan, SSCC provides a platform to enhance the spirit of ecumenical cooperation towards collective action for peace in the world’s youngest nation. 

In their statement shared with ACI Africa March 16, SSCC members say, “Nonviolence is broader than pacifism” and that “it’s much more than the absence of violence and it’s never passive.”

SSCC members further describe nonviolence as “a spirituality, a constructive force, an effective method for social transformation and a powerful way of life committed to the wellbeing of all.”

Recalling their retreat in Lukenya in Kenya in 2022 during which they reviewed the SSCC Action Plan for Peace (APP), the heads of the churches in South Sudan say, “We agreed that gospel of nonviolence should be an essential avenue for the Church to foster peace in South Sudan.”

The Church leaders request the ecumenical global partners “to support them in increasing the knowledge of active nonviolence.”


The church leaders in South Sudan further call upon Christians and all the people of goodwill in world’s youngest nation “to live a nonviolent life and to respond actively, courageously and nonviolently to all manifestations of violence.”

Patrick Juma Wani is a South Sudanese journalist with a great zeal and interest for Catholic Church related communication. Patrick holds a Diploma in Journalism and Mass Communication from Makerere Institute for Social Development (MISD) in Uganda. He has over 7 years of extensive experience in leading the development and implementation of media, advocacy, communication and multimedia strategy and operations, with an excellent track record of editorial leadership, budget management, and stakeholder outreach. He currently works as a Journalist for ACI Africa.