Philip Thon Aleu
January 25, 2008 (BOR, Jonglei) — Jonlgei governor has appealed upon Upper Nile Church leaders who met here today to work for peaceful coexistence among different tribes and promote the esprit of peace.
- Kuol Manyang Juk (ST)
The long awaited Episcopal Church of the Sudan (ECS) Upper Nile Conference has began on Friday January 25 in Bor town, Southern Sudan. High on the agenda is the ‘Name of the new diocese’ created out of Bor diocese earlier registered as Kongor.
The governor of Jonglei state, Lt. Gen. Kuol Manyang witnessed the opening ceremony in Laudier church, Bor town, today. Delivering his opening speech, the governor called for the effort of church leaders to work for peace and non segregating co-existence among the people.
“When you read the Ten Commandments, you will realize that they are all about peace. And as children of God, we must work for peace,” said Mr. Manyang shortly before declaring the conference open.
The conference brought all the high ranking church leaders of the region (Upper Nile) to Bor town. Rt. Rev. canon Nathaniel Garang Anyieth, the acting ECS bishop of the Sudan and the bishop of Bor diocese is chairing the conference. Bishops Daniel Deng Bul, Hillary Garang Deng and Ezakiel Diing Ajang, the assistance bishop of Bor diocese, are attending the conference.
The conference is expected to last three or four days. Nearly all units of church in Upper Nile region are represented; including what appears to be minor because the first agenda is very sensitive.
Getting an accepted name for the diocese created out of Bor had remained a setback for long in the regional church system. Some church leaders, from Twic area, want their diocese be called Kongor while others prefer being called Twic East and Duk diocese. Kongor is an area within Twic East County while Duk is an independent County, all in Jonglei state.
Those refusing the naming of the diocese being Kongor say it is squeezing ‘a horse through the eye of the needle.’ This may as well pave a way to seek an independent Duk diocese leaving alone the fierce debate within Twic East community, some observers added so. Those preferring Kongor claims it is the continuation of the existing area name.
Prior to the meeting, the bishop of Reng, Rt. Rev. Daniel Deng told a youth conference earlier January in Bor town that politics shouldn’t interfere with faith. “As Christians, we shouldn’t allow politicians to drive us. What is it to politicians talking about Kongor diocese or whatsoever?” He was referring to this conference.
Other agendas are the possible creation of Malek, Duk dioceses and other plans in the regional church.