Date: August 7, 2021
‘Together, we are his house, built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets. And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus himself.’ (Ephesians 2:20 NLT)
It’s encouraging to remember that we’re all welcomed into God’s family. Paul explains to the church in Ephesus that Jesus has broken down all barriers to salvation, so now people of all nations can be united as fellow citizens in God’s house.
With this in mind, let’s pray for those in Sudan and Nigeria who face ongoing difficulties.
Challenges of churches in Sudan
In June, the Orthodox Church was denied permission to build a church on land they owned in Omdurman, Sudan. They were told that the land could only be used for residential or commercial purposes, rather than a place of worship.
Following a review by the governor of Khartoum, the decision was reversed on 16 July and they were granted permission to build a church.
While this is a reason to rejoice, there are still many challenges to freedom of religion or belief in Sudan. For example, there still isn’t a clear process for registering or constructing places of worship. Churches tend to face more obstacles than mosques, while the government appears to resolve issues on a case by case basis.
An update on Professor Tarfa
At the end of June, we shared the amazing news that Professor Solomon Tarfa, cofounder of the Du Merci orphanages in Nigeria, was acquitted of two false charges. He returned to court on 27 July to defend a final charge of forgery, but this trial has now been adjourned until 6 October. This will allow time for the defence to produce two witnesses who will corroborate Professor Tarfa’s innocence.
Please keep praying for all the children of DuMerci orphanages, who should now be able to return to the care of the Tarfas – the only parents they have ever known. We particularly lift up 14-year-old Moses, who suffered extensive burns in an accident at the government-run home he was moved to in December; he has just been released from hospital.
In summary, please pray:
- That the 16 children will be returned quickly to the DuMerci orphanages.
- That Moses will be completely healed, with no restrictions to the use of his hands and arms.
- For a swift acquittal at Professor Tarfa’s next hearing, so that he and his wife Mercy can continue with their lives.
- That the Sudanese government will create a clear, non-discriminatory policy for the registration and construction of places of worship.