Christian Organised Forces Celebrate Jubilee with SPLA

The Catholic Church from the Archdiocese of Khartoum celebrated on Sunday 13 October, the 5th Jubilee Anniversary of the Christian Organized Forces (Military and Police). The occasion was attended by thousands of Christian faithful in Khartoum.

Prayers and the eucharistic celebration were dedicated to the Christian soldiers in a mass held at the square of St. Matthew’s Catholic Cathedral and was presided over by His Eminence Cardinal Gabriel Zubeir Wako, Metropolitan Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Khartoum and the 'Honorary Patron' of the Catholic Church in Sudan. It was con-celebrated by:
His Lordship Rudolph Deng Majak - Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Wau
Rev. Fr. Peter Ayoung Maguin - Vicar General, Archdiocese of Khartoum
Rev. Professor Fr. John Dingi Martino - Rector and Principal of St. Paul’s National Major Seminary (Theology Section)
Rev. Fr. William Deng Mayen - Diocesan Education Secretary of the Save the Savable Progamme for the Internally Displaced Children in Northern Sudan and many others.

Thousands of Organized Forces members took active part in the celebration, among them 500 from the SPLA Forces, who celebrated the Jubilee for the first time. It was dedicated to all Christian soldiers in Sudan. This Jubilee Anniversary was made unique by the participation of large number of SPLA members who filled the compound of St. Matthew’s Cathedral in their khaki uniforms and guns, and mingled with ordinary citizens and other soldiers of the Sudanese Armed Forces.

At the beginning of the mass, Cardinal Zubeir Wako welcomed all the soldiers, whom he called “Nas Kaki”, that is 'people in Army Uniform'. The Cardinal stated that it was the day the Lord had made and willed; that it was celebrated in such a way that would help the soldiers renew their commitment to serve their brothers and sisters with fidelity, all done with love because God is Love.

In his sermon, Cardinal Zubeir Wako said, “Today we rejoice together with our brothers and sisters, members of the Army and the Police, just as we rejoiced five years ago together with the Organized Forces. “Today we not only congratulate them (the soldiers) but we also encourage them to discover God’s love and His gifts in them."

The Prelate said the faith of the soldiers must be strong, just as the faith of the Roman officer who told Jesus that he was not worthy for the Lord to visit his house, but only "say the word" and his son would be healed; and indeed, his son was healed at the word of Jesus in whom he had faith.

He said the first person to be baptized by St. Peter was a soldier called Cornelius, the Roman centurion to whom Jesus sent Peter to baptize. He encouraged the Organized Forces by saying most of the martyrs in the first centuries of Christianity were soldiers. For example in North Africa, there were six thousand soldiers who were ordered to offer sacrifices that were against their faith, but they refused and accepted to die for the sake of Jesus Christ.

Gabriel Cardinal Wako said that last year he wrote a Pastoral Letter to the faithful, all men and women of good will, telling them, “Peace without love is nothing”!

The SPLA Commander, Brigadier Daw Tor, Head of the SPLA Forces that are now part of the Joint Integrated Unit (JIU) in Khartoum, delivered a word of thanks on behalf of the SPLA forces and said they want to do a lot of things for their brothers and sisters, who have suffered equally with them during all these years of turmoil. He cited education as the priority need for the suffering people of the South.

He said the young ones must go to universities and plan for a better future for the South, because they were deprived of getting quality education during the time of war. Cdr. Daw thanked Cardinal Zubeir and the Catholic Church for organizing the occ

Posted in: Governance
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