Two Frontline Fellowship mission teams have succeeded in delivering and distributing the largest shipments of Bibles and Christian books ever smuggled into an officially Islamic country. They also conducted the first training course for Secondary School Teachers in Equatoria Province since the war began.
From September to November, 1997, Frontline Fellowship delivered six shipments of Bibles to seven different regions of Sudan. The number of Bibles and New Testaments delivered during these trips came to 13,326. In addition, 8,769 hymn and prayer books, Bible study, Sunday school and other Christian books were distributed inside Sudan. This made up a total of 22,086 Bibles and Christian books in ten languages.
The logistics involved in loading and off-loading and carrying over 400 boxes, a total of eight tons, across innumerable flooded rivers, over mountains and through swamps in a war zone like Sudan was extremely difficult. These shipments brought the total number of Bibles delivered to Sudan by Frontline Fellowship in 1997 alone to 36,450. The total number of hymn and prayer books delivered comes to 9,765 and other Christian books 13,790. The overall total of Bibles and Christian books in 17 languages distributed inside Sudan by Frontline Fellowship in 1997 has now exceeded 60,000!
Return to the Nuba
Over 5,000 of these Bibles, hymn books and other Christian books have been smuggled behind enemy lines to the beleaguered Christians in the Nuba Mountains. In March 1997 a Frontline Mission team was bombed by helicopter gunships as it delivered Arabic Bibles to this island of Christianity besieged in a sea of Islam. In September the same Frontline missionaries returned to the Nuba, walking over 250 kilometers to conduct 30 services and personally delivered thousands of Bibles and books to 26 different congregations.
Kotobi Churcb Restored
In November the Director of Frontline Fellowship, Rev. Peter Hammond, conducted the first ever service in the newly restored Episcopal Church in Kotobi. This church building had been destroyed by a helicopter gunship rocket attack in August 1996. Over 500 people packed out the rebuilt church building for a joyous three and a half hour celebration that Jesus Christ is building his church and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it!
Teacher Training Course
Rev. Peter Hammond and Dr. Monte Wilson also conducted the first training course for secondary school teachers in Western Equatoria since the war began. There are many primary schools in the province, but only three secondary schools (in Yambio, Maridi and Kotobi). Forty-seven teachers (from each of those three schools) attended this two-week Biblical World View Seminar for, secondary school teachers. Frontline Fellowship also provided 1,500 Moru New Testaments and Psalms to 100 primary schools in Mundri County. These Scriptures will be used as textbooks.
Jesus Film in Sudan
Thousands of Sudanese people gathered for each of the first screenings of the JESUS film in their areas. Evangelists were equipped with gospel recordings, “Messengers” (tough tape recorders with solar panels), Gospel tapes and flip charts. Chaplains were provided with bicycles. Repairs on the Bishop Gqynne Bible College were also begun.
Lui Liberated and Restored
In his sermon at a special memorial service at Lui, the birthplace of Christianity in Moruland, the Director of Frontline Fellowship paid tribute to pioneer missionary Kenneth Frazer. Dr. Frazer, a CMS missionary from Scotland, brought the Gospel to Moruland in 1920. He established the first hospital, school and church in the area. Twice these buildings at Lui were destroyed by the Muslim government, first in 1965, and then in the 1990s. Yet on the fifteenth of November, 1997, over 1,500 people packed the Frazer Memorial Church in Lui. Despite this repeated destruction, the threefold ministry started by Dr. Frazer has once again been resurrected. The Lui Hospital is fully operational again: almost 8,000 patients had been treated and 200 major operations done in the first two months since re-opening. Since Lui was liberated from the occupying Arab force by the SPLA resistance movement, thousands of people have come back to Lui and the primary school already has 200 students enrolled. The resilience of the church founded by Dr. Frazer has defied all attempts to destroy it. Jesus is the Resurrection and the Life!
Bibles to the Battlefront
Thousands of Bibles were distributed to SPLA soldiers, including at the battlefront. Frontline Fellowship missionaries traveled by vehicle, motorbikes, boat and by foot to deliver Bibles to some of the most inaccessible areas, mostly in the newly liberated territories. On occasion, they literally walked among the decomposing corpses, skulls and skeletons of the defeated Arab forces on the battlefield to minister to soldiers in the trenches. Bibles and Gospel booklets were also delivered to hundreds of Muslim prisoners of war.
Ministering to Body, Mind and Soul
All in all. Frontline missionaries have presented over 500 church services and other meetings in Sudan this year, including two medical workshops, the teacher training course and a pastors course.
“Cush will submit herself to God,” Psalm 68:31.
- Peter Hammond
Dr. Peter Hammond is a missionary who has pioneered evangelistic outreaches in the war zones of Angola, Mozambique and Sudan. Peter is the Founder and Director of Frontline Fellowship and the Director of United Christian Action. He has authored numerous publications, in particular he has written Holocaust in Rwanda, Faith Under Fire in Sudan, In the Killing Fields of Mozambique, Putting Feet to Your Faith and Renaissance or Reformation. He is the editor of both Frontline Fellowship News and UCANEWS. Peter is married to Lenora and they have been blessed with four children: Andrea, Daniela, Christopher, and Calvin.