In solidarity with the people of southern Sudan

Dear His Grace the Archbishop Daniel Deng Bul Yak,

Greetings from Christ Church, La Crosse, Wisconsin. We have been keeping vigil and praying for peaceful referendum and God's blessings on the people of Sudan. As I look back of my own involvement from1994 onward with the Province of the Church of Sudan. In 1992 I read an article in the YES magazine of CMS with a picture of Bishop Nathaniel Garang on the cover. It is from that time I committed my efforts and voice to speak for the persecuted church in Sudan. We have been praying for this day for God to set the people of Southern Sudan free from the oppression of Northern Sudanese government. Finally, God has brought this moment, a day for the people of Sudan, to decide their future and enter into the Promised Land. I am your brother who has stood in solidarity with the suffering people of Sudan. God opened doors for me to be the voice of the people of Sudan in the USA, at the Lambeth Conference 1998 "Hear My People's Cry", around the Anglican Communion, before the US Congressional Hearing on the Capital Hill in Washington D.C. and to President George Bush. It has been great honor for me serve as the chair of the Link committee in the Episcopal in the USA to ECS and Canon and Commissary to the Archbishop of Sudan. With deep humility, I give thanks to God for allowing me to be a servant of Christ to serve my people in Sudan.

This morning I join many around the world on my knees in prayer and fasting for a peaceful separation between north and south. Tomorrow when there will be a new day we shall celebrate your freedom on the Altar of Christ Episcopal Church as we celebrate Feast of Epiphany. For this new Epiphany that God has set His people free from the tyranny of Pharaoh to let His people go free. We give thanks to the risen Christ who has suffered with his people in Sudan and now in the power of resurrection we are about to celebrate new life. ALLELUIA!

A free Southern Sudan shall present many challenges. Although President Salva Kiir Mayardit in a speech last January said, "This is the final part of our journey." In reality tomorrow morning you begin a new journey in the family of the world community. It shall be now your responsibility to turn the page from decades of civil war to learn to walk on the road to be a peaceful community. In few hours we shall find Southern Sudan as world's newest country on the map with new challenges to build, to heal and to establish law and order in an area of longest war of Africa. New challenges can also be opportunities for your people and the people of world community to work together to build prosperous and peaceful Southern Sudan. Our world is in desperate need of such models. People of Southern Sudan cannot do it alone. The world community needs to stand in solidarity with you. I pledge to continue to work for peace and stability for my people in Sudan. Please let me know if there is a future celebration service organized at ALL Saints in Juba of the freedom of my people in Sudan. I would like to join you in your celebration to give thanks to God. I continually pray for God's blessings on your ministry and the people of Sudan.

Salaam, Shanti, Shalom!

Your brother in Christ,

The Rev. Canon Dr. Patrick P. Augustine, Honorary Canon, All Saints Cathedral Juba


Christ Episcopal Church

111 N. 9th St, La Crosse, WI 54601

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