12, December 2018
The Presbyterian Church in Ireland (PCI) has encouraged its members to pray for people affected by escalating violence in the Republic of Cameroon in West Africa. Violent clashes, with increasing loss of life, is growing between Cameroon’s English-speaking Anglophone community and French-speaking Francophone community, according to reports.
Rev Uel Marrs, secretary to PCI’s Council for Global Mission, explained: “Through reports coming via family contacts of Cameroonians who attend Presbyterian churches in the Republic of Ireland, we understand that thousands of people have been displaced as the situation in parts of the country deteriorates, particularly in the northwest region and southwest region.
“The increasingly violent situation has its origins in the division of the region during various colonial administrations and post-independence settlements. The situation is amounting to a ‘silent civil war’, as some have described it, as that has the potential to be a second Rwanda. Today we wanted to highlight the situation in the country and ask people to pray,” he said. “Prayer is an essential and powerful part of the Christian life and we are asking people to pray specifically for peace and calm in all areas of Cameroon and for tensions to decrease. For just and fair treatment of all people by the authorities and prayer for help and support for those affected by the violence.”
Speaking about the situation, Rev Alan Boal, minister of Abbey Presbyterian Church in Dublin, said one member of his congregation recently described the escalating crisis as “a second Rwanda” – a reference to the genocide which claimed hundreds of thousands of lives in 1994.