By Dak Buoth,
Feb 15, 2016(Nyamilepedia) —- We are offering our advice pro-bon to all South Sudanese Churches at Home and in Diaspora to work in conformity or in line with the biblical commandments of love for self and the neighbors only, (Mark 12:31). People should go to church to seek wise counsel and repentance and not vice-versa.
The daily preaching of Pastors in South Sudan must sincerely reflect the practices of renowned clergies such as Jesus Christ, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, Rev. Desmond Tutu and Dr. Timothy Njoya among other well-known Teachers of peace, forgiveness, social justice, healing and reconciliation.
Pastors are supposed to be justice oriented, fearless, and selfless and not being too economical with the truth as witnessed today in South Sudan. They must therefore dedicate their calling or respected profession to sensitize us on vitality of togetherness, integrity and to instill desired moral values at this time of need. The Church is always there to speak for the weak and not for the wicked, displaced persons, the imprisoned ones and the voiceless; and they must mold and educate the worshipers to cherish and uphold such virtues without distinction.
All Men and women of the ‘cloth’ must be torch bearers who speak the truth in time of crisis and condemn all immoral vices bedeviling South Sudan. They should be the one persuading the embattled politicians to embrace change and diversity, for political maturity is the acceptance of political diversity; and to make politicians believe that there is life after abandoning state power, just like religious men are made to believe that there is life after death.
However, the Bible, in the book of John 8:23-24 advises us to tell the truth and the truth shall set us free. The questions we are bringing forth are: Did the church go to war or it has been compromised? Where is the Church and what role is it doing at this time when South Sudan is on its knees? Can’t someone see or feel the grave silence of the church today; what does that gesture amount to? In our view, the answer is the former. It is undeniable that the Church is frontally at war in South Sudan. What we hear and see in church during Sabbath days is totally difference and an unexpected.
The Church in south Sudan has now become breeding grounds for war mongers, and ethnic chauvinists. People go to church every Sunday to boost the morale of the armed combatants instead of providing counseling sessions and teach the ring leaders how to seek change in none violence way. Most churches have now become extension of armed movements that are killing innocent people in South Sudan.
More often than seldom, you would find Pastors deviating from main verse read in the Bible and begin preaching ethnic politics that only inflame worshippers’ emotions; and when they talk, you could tell who they are working for. It is crystal clear; Pastors in South Sudan are hiding behind their tribe men in the battle fields, and this must come to an end unless we admit to perish together.
The churches have scored poorly in the ongoing quest for peace and justice in South Sudan. As matter of fact, they have gotten clean nil and history will judge them harshly. The church has showed ‘unprecedented indifference’ in the all ‘solution seeking processes since the war was introduced back in December 2013; and instead they are sabotaging and jeopardize the process of peace.
They are using their deafening silence as pretext for exercising neutrality, but they don’t know neutrality does not mean silence or inaction, neutrality mean getting involve in the resolution of problem by telling the truth as it is; and therefore providing objective solutions in view to end the existing discord permanently.
The old adage tell us, ‘‘it is not the activity of the rascals that destroy society but the inactivity of the good people’’ We challenge the church in South Sudan to take its rightful place and be counted. We urge them to Use their influence and numerical strength to end fighting rather than conducting it. They should preach forgiveness and help create a unitary leadership that is people centered and that respected the constitution and uphold the rule of law.
Let the churchmen come out and wipe the tears of the weeping South Sudanese by telling the truth to those who are frying innocence citizenry in the scorching sun at internally displaced camps.
We call on them to take the lead in this phase two of reconciliation and healing as soon as transitional government of national unity is established. (TGoNU). Let the church in South Sudan grab the available opportunity to sensitize the impoverished and divided populace about the recently signed peace agreement and to be at the forefront in its implementation process.
Through church, the citizens of South Sudan can realize their commonality in term of history and their destiny. All human beings are created equal before God that is Religion. All human beings are equal before the law and that is Jurisprudence. The Genome project of 1998 established that we are 99.9 percent the same regardless of tribe, race sex, and that is Science. So divisions however are socially produced, magnified and commodified, and that is politics. ‘Whether we want to be together or divided is a choice we make. It is not preordained’’
The church can provide light in time of this extreme darkness facing our country; and this is the opportune time than ever before to demonstrate that high responsibility, failure to which, the Church as an institution risk losing its relevance, as such, we may either shun it or demand for its closure pending its internal reform and revitalization
The church was traditionally immune or exempted from being regulated or subjected to check and balance because we assumed they are holy places under careful watch of men with integrity, however, if there are empirical evidence showing that they are perpetuating and inciting violence and division among our communities, we shall devise a mechanism to curtail such unprofessional behaviors, and those church officers will be in for rude shock.
Historically, Jesus Christ was the first man who chased away some rogue Pastors who converted the church into market place. We believe the church will listen to us, and promptly make a U-turn and do the right thing first. We shall retreat but no surrender for we shall overcome.
Bado mapambano mapambano
Dak Buoth Chairman. Tel: 0728677646/0708444697