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Rescue mission for 2,000 vulnerable Chri...

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Rescue mission for 2,000 vulnerable Christians trapped in Sudan underway

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Rescue mission for 2,000 vulnerable Christians trapped in Sudan underway

Project(s): 48-1078

Country/Region: Sudan, Middle East and North Africa, South Sudan

Barnabas Aid’s major operation to rescue 2,000 Christian women and children trapped in Sudan got underway yesterday (19 September) with the first successful airlift to South Sudan.

The first group of returning Christians are helped off the plane in Juba
The first group of returning Christians are helped off the plane in Juba

A number of practical and bureaucratic obstacles that had delayed the start of the rescue mission have been overcome, enabling the first of 12 chartered flights to depart from Khartoum for Juba. The second and third flights are scheduled for tomorrow, with more to be arranged in the days and weeks ahead.

Church and community leaders have identified the most needy and vulnerable Christians among the hundreds of thousands of Southerners trapped in Khartoum. We are flying approximately 800 women, around two-thirds of whom are widows, and 1,200 children to Juba. The cost per person is £175 (€220, US$275, AU$260, NZ$345).

They will be welcomed at temporary reception facilities set up by the South Sudanese government before moving on to extended family connections around the country. The Church in South Sudan is ready to help with their practical needs.  

Endangered and impoverished

Christians of Southern origin remaining in Sudan are extremely vulnerable. They were stripped of their citizenship after the South voted to secede and were given a deadline to leave. President Omar al-Bashir has made it very clear that they are not welcome, repeatedly declaring his intention to make the country’s next constitution 100% Islamic and strengthen sharia law.

Christian women and children awaiting their return to South Sudan
Christian women and children awaiting their return to South Sudan

Many have made their own way to South Sudan, but hundreds of thousands remain trapped in a country that is increasingly hostile to their presence, and the Sudanese government has closed the border to prevent any more travelling to South Sudan by the river Nile.

Their vulnerability has intensified over the last week as violent Islamic protests against the film Innocence of Muslims rocked Sudan; several Western embassies in Khartoum have been attacked and threats made against Christians in the city. 

As well as facing danger, the impoverished Southern Christians have been living in dire conditions in makeshift shelters on the outskirts of the capital for many months.   

Dr Patrick Sookhdeo, International Director of Barnabas Fund, said:

We are extremely thankful to the Lord that this rescue mission is now underway. He has gone before us and prepared the way, removing obstacles one by one. These vulnerable Christian women and children, who have endured so much hardship and suffering, can now look forward to beginning a new life in South Sudan.

Give Today

If you would like to help rescue a Christian in Sudan, please send a donation to project Sudan – Airlift Women and Children to South Sudan (48-1078). using our secure server.

If you prefer to telephone, dial: 0800 587 4006 from within the UK or +44 1672 565031 from outside the UK. Please quote project reference Sudan – Airlift Women and Children to South Sudan (48-1078).

If you prefer to send a cheque by post: Click this link for the address of our regional office. Please quote project reference Sudan – Airlift Women and Children to South Sudan (48-1078).

For a quick donation of £3.00 by SMS (see terms and conditions here) text Barnabas/1078 to 70007 (Please note: This facility is presently only available to UK supporters).

Please Pray:
  • Give thanks that the Lord has come to the rescue of His people in Sudan. Pray that this will be a powerful witness to His greatness and glory.
  • Pray that the rest of the flights will go ahead without delay or difficulty and that all of the 2,000 women and children will reach Juba safely.
  • Pray for them as they embark on their new lives in South Sudan, that the Lord will provide for all their needs and that they will enjoy peace and many blessings.
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christian, persecution, charity, church, persecuted, sookhdeo, Islam

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Daily prayer

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  • Pray for Barnabas Aid partners in South Sudan who have been supporting Christians forced from their homes by violence. Conflict between supporters of President Salva Kiir and his sacked deputy Riek Machar in December and January displaced around 860,000 people. Churches were burned down and a number of pastors killed, while many people lost their belongings and were left destitute. Give thanks that churches in and around the capital, Juba, were able to provide food and other essentials to many families with help from Barnabas. Pray that they may continue to be salt and light in their country at this unstable time (Matthew 5:13-16), and that it will soon be safe for displaced Christians to return home. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed 23 hours ago

  • Pray for the residents of a mainly Christian village in Borno state, Northern Nigeria, in the aftermath of a horrific attack by Boko Haram militants on 15 February. Ask for God’s comfort for the relatives and friends of the 106 people in Izghe who were gunned down and slaughtered in their houses or in the open as they tried to flee. Pray for strength for the numerous residents who were wounded or whose properties were looted and torched. Pray too for the many Christians who fled into the neighbouring state after the attack, and ask that the Christian community in the North of Nigeria will be preserved in the face of Islamist violence. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Tue, Apr 2014 00:00

  • Violent attacks by militants from the Islamist group Boko Haram continue unabated in Northern Nigeria. On one horrendous day of violence on 26 January, at least 138 people were killed. A church in Wada Chakawa village in Adamawa state was targeted; the attackers locked the congregation inside and then detonated bombs, shooting and cutting the throats of people who tried to escape. They then went on a four-hour rampage in the village. Later the same day, Kawuri village in neighbouring Borno state was burned to the ground. Boko Haram is fighting to establish an Islamic state, and Christians are among its main targets. Pray that the Nigerian authorities will succeed in containing its insurgency. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Mon, Apr 2014 00:00

  • Almighty God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we give You thanks on this Easter Day for the living hope that You have given us and all Your people through the resurrection of Jesus from the dead (1 Peter 1:3). We pray that the prospect of an enduring inheritance and future salvation will encourage our persecuted brothers and sisters to persevere in their faith, whatever may happen to them. We pray that we too may be sustained by this hope in the sufferings that we experience for the sake of Christ. We ask that the joy and resurrection power of the Lord will give strength and peace to persecuted believers today and every day. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sun, Apr 2014 00:00

  • Give thanks for the Christ-like responses of Christian leaders in CAR to the crisis that threatens them and their churches. They have distanced themselves from the anti-balaka militias, saying that these should not be labelled as Christian and that they hold no mandate from the churches. The leaders have also condemned the violence in the country, whatever its origin, and have called on Christians to pursue forgiveness, reconciliation and healing. Churches are hiding, defending and caring for thousands of Muslims endangered by the anti-balaka, and one of CAR’s most senior church leaders has invited the president of the country’s Islamic community to move into his church compound. Pray that this powerful witness to the grace and love of Christ will help to bring peace to the shattered country. Subscribe to the prayer points rss feed Sat, Apr 2014 00:00

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