Friends and neighbors of CRS partner Solidarity with Southern Sudan gathered at their residence in 2011, on the eve of Republic of South Sudan’s official declaration of Independence. The event including children singing the new national anthem, and “”Happy Birthday,”" to their new nation. Photo by Sara Fajardo/CRS
Just about this time three years ago the world was preparing for the referendum vote that would ultimately create the newest country on the planet, South Sudan. We asked Catholics and others of goodwill across the US to mobilize for 101 days of prayer and advocacy for what then seemed like a remote hope that the vote for independence from Sudan would remain peaceful. To the enormous relief of the entire world, South Sudan was born in 2011 with relative calm and minimal conflict.
If you have been reading the headlines in the last few days, you know that the fragile peace within South Sudan is at risk of falling apart. Once again we ask for your prayers and your voice for people in South Sudan.
Here is our official statement about the current situation in Sudan:
Catholic Relief Services continues to stand with the people of South Sudan in the aftermath of an outbreak of violent conflict that has taken an estimated 500 lives and displaced up to 34,000. We call on the international community to bring together the key parties to dialogue in order to help avert a civil war.
The ecumenical Church has long been a trusted and independent voice for peace. We support their mediation efforts and will work with them to help foster reconciliation and national unity in the months ahead.
CRS has a long history of working with and for the people of South Sudan. We remain committed to developing much needed infrastructure, humanitarian assistance, and peacebuilding in the years to come. Our prayers for peace are with the people of South Sudan.