South Sudan Primate in Salisbury

by Gerry Lynch last modified 11 Sep, 2018 04:10 PM

The Most Revd Justin Badi Arama visits Salisbury and attends installation of Dean; includes VIDEO

The Primate of South Sudan, the Most Revd Justin Badi Arama, has recorded an interview in Salisbury 45 years after the Salisbury-Sudan Link first came into being.

Watch an interview with the Most Revd Justin Badi Arama here.

The Primate was visiting the Diocese to attend the installation of the Very Revd Nick Papadopulos as 81st Dean of Salisbury, as well to visit parishes and projects, and attend a meeting with the Bishop’s Staff.

This was part of a wider of visit to the UK that included time in Canterbury and at Lambeth Palace, as well as a visit to the Bishop of Llandaff, the Rt Revd June Osborne, in Cardiff.

The Primate updated the many supporters of the Salisbury-Sudans partnership on the current situation in South Sudan, saying, “There are peace talks going on, and some agreements signed by the warring parties. But on the ground there is still violence happening, robberies and road ambushes.

“Even last week, our Provincial Youth Worker was killed in an ambush on his way from Juba to Yei. People are still displaced, some into neighbouring countries. Those who have remained in the country are suffering due to the deteriorating economic situation where prices are high.

“The Church in all this is trying to preach the message of peace and hope. The Church has taken upon itself to reconcile and heal the wounds caused by the conflict.

“The Church has no tribe. All those baptised in Christ are all one in Christ as children of God. The fact that the Church is in all communities is advantage the Church has in trying to preach the gospel of unity and peace. Although the politicians try to divide people, the Church is the unifying factor.”

The Primate acknowledged the real challenges to the Salisbury-South Sudan relationship which had resulted from very different understandings of homosexuality, but called for continued mutual prayer and support.

“Christianity is based on fellowship and encouragement of one another”, he continued, “Since the start of Christianity, people have prayed for each other and encouraged each other. That’s why it is important for our Church to have partners and friends in Salisbury and other places, for encouragement, for prayer support and for exchanges of visits.

“In South Sudan, we know there are brothers and sisters praying for us elsewhere.”

He also explained that the relationship has benefits to bring to both parties, saying, “There are many things the Church in England can learn from the Church in Africa and South Sudan. One of the things is living by faith. Here, because of the abundance, the word faith seems to be less. We can still teach how to live by faith, total dependency on God, His power and His provision.

“As we say the Lord’s Prayer, ‘give us our daily bread’, we mean it – there is nothing in the fridge! We know God can provide.”

Joy was another area wher people in England could learn from South Sudan – how to be joyful in all situations, because joy comes from knowing the Lord as Saviour.

He also expressed appreciation for the Church of England and Diocese of Salisbury “for standing with us for a long time. Especially for advocacy for us during the first war.

“We continue to encourage you to advocate on our behalf, to raise the profile of the situation in South Sudan, that our leaders may be reminded to put the interests of their own people above their own interests.

“That can only come when the Church here prays and advocates.”

The Diocese passes on its condolences to all in the Episcopal Church in South Sudan on the death of the Rt Revd Simon Adut Yuang, Bishop of Yirol, in a plane crash on Sunday. He is survived by his wife and six children. As Primate Justin has requested, please pray that God will keep his soul eternally and comfort those bereaved.

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