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“Conflict Zones and Covid-19” webinar will offer a clarion call to compassion

A webinar hosted by the World Council of Churches (WCC) on 26 November will explore “Conflict Zones and Covid-19: A call to compassion.” Speakers from Cameroon, Nigeria, South Sudan, Lebanon, Belarus and Colombia will offer their insights on how conflict exacerbates the conditions for contracting and treating COVID-19 among civilians caught in the crossfire, especially women.

South Sudan Church leaders welcome new cabinet

South Sudanese church leaders have welcomed a new cabinet, which the country’s president Salva Kiir Mayardit announced on 12 March.

The unveiling of the cabinet ended months of anxious waiting for a new unity government which was mandated by a 2018 peace pact, known as the Revitalised Agreement for the Resolution of Conflict in the Republic of South Sudan. The government has 34 ministers and 10 deputies.

Churches in Nigeria promote rights of women with disabilities

“The church has lots of roles in removing barriers that prevent persons with disabilities from living a fulfilled life. All are created in the image of God and have equal rights. Sexual and reproductive health is one such right that should not be denied to any woman,” said Rev. Evans Onyemara, general secretary of the Christian Council of Nigeria during a training on empowering women with disabilities on sexual and reproductive health care held at Umuahia, Nigeria from 9-11 March.

South Africans draw hope despite recurring challenges

Gender-based violence and attacks on foreign nationals in South Africa have left communities wondering where to turn. In a visit of solidarity, a World Council of Churches (WCC) Pilgrim Team visited the nation from 7-12 December.

South Sudan Council of Churches: peace “is a question of the heart”

A message released 9 November from the South Sudan Council of Churches reflected that the will for peace is not measured only by deadlines and technical arrangements. “Whether the government is formed on 12th November 2019 or a further extension is agreed, it is a question of the heart and of the political will,” the message reads. “The people of South Sudan have begged their political leaders to find a peaceful way forward, to look beyond political interest, emotional turmoil and historical grievances, and to hold their duty towards the people of the country as a sacred calling which is to be gravely cherished in holy servitude and with deep respect.”

Churches in southern Africa stand against violence, xenophobia

Churches across southern Africa are publicly saying #EnoughIsEnough,” with many denominations and congregations continuing to issue strong statements, arrange special prayer events, and speak out against rising levels of violence.

Both the Dutch Reformed Church and the Uniting Presbyterian Church in Southern Africa (UPCSA) have been discussing gender justice and how to keep the momentum going on the unprecedented public demand for change.

Rev. Damon Mkandawire: “A man is a gender justice champion”

This is the fifth in a series of interviews with Thursdays in Black ambassadors who are playing a vital role in increasing the impact of our collective call for a world without rape and violence. Rev. Damon Mkandawire is hospital administrator for the United Church of Zambia’s Mbereshi Mission Hospital.

African religious leaders express new concerns over South Sudan peace

A new concern for South Sudan is emerging, as African religious leaders warn that the failure to implement the latest peace agreement could push the young nation back into war.

The leaders spoke in Nairobi on 12 September, the day the world’s newest nation marked a year since the signing of the Revitalized Agreement on Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan.

When you strike the women, you strike a rock

As South Africa grapples with a gender-based violence crisis, president Cyril Ramaphosa is convening, on 18 September, the entire parliament for a special session on how to create a society in which women feel not only safe, but enjoy human rights equal to men. With 52,420 sexual offences reported in the last financial year - and many unreported - hundreds of thousands of people in South Africa are publicly saying “#EnoughIsEnough.” Churches and faith communities are a vocal, visible part of this call for change. Will the momentum grow? Will we stand with the women of South Africa?

Moravian Church in Tanzania launches Thursdays in Black

Moravian women pastors and evangelists have said: “Enough is enough: no more rape and violence against women." Women leaders of the church marched in the streets of Mbeya town in Tanzania wearing black on Thursday to officially launch the Thursdays in Black global campaign to stand against rape and violence.