Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Late in the day Sunday, the Archbishop of Sudan, our good friend Daniel Deng, corresponded to say there were reasons for optimism. The vote had begun and his region was peaceful.
In spite of the violence that has claimed at least 76 lives, we already have much to be thankful for and are seeing the Lord at work answering our prayers.
I beseech you to stay in prayer for the people of Southern Sudan, that peace would result and the voting process would be fair. I also ask your prayers for the Anglican leaders and other Christian believers throughout the country who have demonstrated an unwavering faith in the face of unthinkable persecution.
Signs of hope are certainly present. The Associated Press reports that with more than 60 percent of registered voters having cast their ballots, the vote will be valid and binding. Voice of America news service reported that there is already rejoicing among refugees who are hopeful theyâ€™ll be able to return to a new, independent country that they can call home. Some of them, born in refugee camps, have never even seen their homeland.
Thank you in advance for standing with me as we offer prayers on behalf of the millions of Anglican Christians in Southern Sudan who are a vital part of our global church family.
Faithfully your archbishop,
Photo caption: A member of the polling staff helps a Southern Sudanese woman to vote at a polling center in the suburb of al-Jereif in Khartoum, Sudan on January 14, 2011. Credit: Associated Press