The Common Good

Darfur's Cries Grow Louder

I was on a conference call for an hour and a half last week. It was intense. I haven't fully calmed down from it. I paced back and forth in the living room for a good portion of it.

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Darfur leaders and activist leaders were on the call, trying to figure out what to do. Sudan has kicked entire aid agencies out of the Sudanese camps for displaced persons. As if it weren't bad enough, now over 1 million people are left to wither away slowly.

One of the leaders on our call was a man from Darfur. He was reporting from Kalma Camp, a camp of 90,000 souls. Can you comprehend that number really? That's just one camp. There are many more just like it. There's a meningitis outbreak there, but no doctors to treat it. But that's not really scratching the surface.

I can't adequately reenact the tenor of this man's plea in this note, but it brought me to tears. He's crying for help. "YES, we CAN live for many days without any food", he says. But in a desperate cry he continues, "BUT, there's NO WATER left in the camp. HOW LONG WILL WE LIVE WITHOUT WATER?"

Darfur has been a genocide in slow motion for over five years now, while the world has stood by. Well, it's speeding up now. If the world doesn't express outrage, those holding the power to do something will do nothing beyond just talking about the issue.

Our church communities need to be powerful advocates for these oppressed people. We must remember that we are not waiting for God to act. God is waiting for us to act. God is in Darfur, and God knows the suffering there. God hears the cries. God is calling you and I to restore Darfur.

Become a voice for Darfur. Use your voice to echo the cries from these people and let your voice be unsettling each day until aid pours back into Darfur. Added together, we'll be loud enough to shake the right people just enough to cause appropriate action to take place so that at the very least, over a million brothers and sisters, mothers and daughters, farmers and teachers, cooks and drivers can continue to exist.

Find links to a wealth of resources at this link.

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Charlton Breen is a coordinator for the Michigan Darfur Coalition, and is currently studying intercultural missions at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Michigan.

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