They marched in step passing us. Friends today, enemies tomorrow: Until the beginning of this week they had worked together with us; then they demonstrated against our meetings in the refugee camp..
What was the reason? It still remains a mystery why 27 pastors of the various Episcopal churches had decided to let us down the night before the crusade started. “We do not come and we will not tell you why!” – This statement reached us only indirectly. Merely three pastors worked together with us despite everything.
For weeks, our preparation team was with the pastors of these churches on the way; together they showed the Jesus film, preached and invited for the Gospel Celebration. Only at the last moment they changed their minds. Was it because of the visit of their bishop on the weekend before? Was it tribalism, because all the pastors of these Episcopal churches belonged to the same tribe: the Dinkas? Was it because of power?
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They threatened everyone in the camp, and told them not to go to our meetings, especially their tribal people were intimidated and very few Dinkas came to the field. They positioned their people strategically, to keep them away from the field.
On Sunday they carried out a demonstrative march against us, so just 100 to 200 people had the courage to attend the meeting on our field. We thank God that it remained with threats alone and neither we, nor our listeners came to harm.
Nevertheless, every evening many people made a decision for Jesus. Thanks to our speaker tower we were able to reach large parts of the camp with the Gospel: Many, who would have liked to join our meetings, were able to hear the Good News in their homes via these loud speakers.
Our East African team was supported by a Service in Mission (SIM) Team from Germany and Switzerland. With them, we did smaller outreaches in the region around the camp. So we were able to reach the people who could not come to the crusade in a flexible way.
We will probably never get to know how many lives have been changed and how many have made a decision for Jesus. Despite all these problems we trust that God is working in secret and that his word will not return empty.
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