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I know that i have posted a number of times on the crisis in Darfur, Sudan and it is not because i have nothing else to post about… it is because the Genocide and other atrocities are real and tragic… and i cannot believe that it is happening in our lifetime, in our world! GENOCIDE…systematic, ethnic cleansing, rape used as a form of terror and warfare, government sponsored militias attacking villages and refugee camps, killing an entire generation of children, raping women and young girls, murdering the men and boys.  This artwork is done by children of Darfur.

After the Holocaust, the world said, “Never Again!”  And then after Cambodia, it said “Never Again”  and after Bosnia & Rwanda the world paused briefly and said “Never Again!”  Now Genocide is occuring AGAIN and will the world say, “Never Again, Again!?”

Growing up, i wondered “How America could remain silent during the Holocaust?” “How could we stand by and do nothing?!” “How could we not know?”  i wondered aloud in history class… and yet, here i am, in America, and the same thing is happening again, and we are remaining silent, doing nothing, and we remain in the dark, again.  How much media time was spent covering Michael Jackson’s trial?  Or Tom Cruise’s new romance?  verses the killing that has been taking place in Southern Sudan over the past two years, and even more recently, the Genocide of 400,000 lives in Darfur, Sudan?  As I have looked around the news, i have found coverage only on the BBC, as the American News Media is consumed with other “more important” things.

I have only just recently woken up to the realities of the world and begun to look far beyond my own life, my own concerns and gain a bit of understanding of the call for Christians to be concerned and involved in issues of justice.  I am learning in deeper ways how Jesus was always concerned with the marginalized, the excluded, the forgotten, the untouchables… the poor and needy and in these moments He spoke of the Kingdom of God being at Hand.  This has new meaning for me as i am trying to understand more of what i am called to do and be as i seek to follow after the way of Jesus.

in that vein…

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“Dear Sudan”, is an interfaith campaign to support  humanitarian relief in Sudan.  Originating in Petaluma, CA the program, “Dear Sudan, Love Petaluma” purposed to raise enough money to feed 55,000 refuges in Sudan for one day- the population of Petaluma- Each Sudanese refugee requires only 16 cents per day for food provided through a program run by Church World Service. Their goal was $8,800 and they raised over $10,000.

Now the campaign has expanded to “Dear Sudan, Love…” and a new blog was launched today!  They are hoping that many cities and towns will participate in this same type of effort…Imagine, only 16 cents per day for food!  I am interested in this project, but need to put together a committee of folks who would be willing to spearhead this effort with me.  If you are so inclined, please email me @ susie@sojournstories.org and we will see if an interfaith-multi-church team can be put together in order to undertake such an endeavor.  Read the story.

The Dear Sudan blog launch features the above painting, entitled “My Duty,” by Beverly Collins, from her “The Invisible Women of Darfur” collection.  Her text for this painting reads as follows:  “My duty to God and my children is to bring forth the will to continue in the face of my oppression.”

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