Last week, Bishop Bill traveled to Kansas City, MS, to join provincial leadership and South Sudanese Christian leadership from across North America for a conference on South Sudanese ministry and Anglican mission. The New England team included the Ven. Joseph Bizimana, archdeacon to South Sudanese Churches, and Edward Loro and Matthew Umba, two South Sudanese friends of our diocese who are currently working with ARDF to bring mission relief to South Sudanese refugees. The goal was to help organize South Sudanese Anglican churches in North America and within the ACNA. The Rev. Leah Turner, rector of Grace Anglican Church, Bridgewater, also accompanied the team.
The province and our diocese worked very hard to help gather these pastors and leaders for two days of training and organizational development. Present were Archbishop Foley Beach; Bishop Bill Atwood; Canon Phil Ashey; South Sudanese Archbishop, the Most Rev. Paul Yugusuk; and Bishops Hilary Garang, Abraham Yhial Nhial, and Andudu Adam.
This fruitful and extraordinary conference ended in a celebratory Eucharist. Mthr Leah, Bp. Atwood, and Bishop Bill led workshops at the conference and created a method for the organization of South Sudanese parishes and leadership across the province. An organizational team of roughly 20 anglican clergy and lay leaders was formed to begin to receive S. Sudanese parishes into ACNA dioceses across the continent.
The S. Sudanese chair for this movement is the Rev. Solomon Mursal from Yeshua Church in Portland, Maine, and we will be gathering other S. Sudanese churches in New England as we go forward. Please keep this initiative both for our diocese and the province in your prayers.