“However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.” -Acts 20:24 

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Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We are going through a great Lenten season. For the Syrian churches the great lent for 50 days. Western churches it for 40 days that begins from Ash Wednesday to Easter. For a believer the lent is a time to rekindle certain relationships. It includes the believer’s relationship with himself, relationship with others, relationship with the nature and other creation, and the relationship with God. Lent is also a time to study and meditate more on the Holy scripture. This is what God tells Joshua about keeping God’s word “Keep this Book of Law always  on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful” (Joshua 1:8). We have to fight against many factors that negatively affect our spiritual life. We have before us the conditions of life that are exhausted by such struggles. But lent gives us the strength to face this without giving up.

 ‘Keliko’ is an ethnic group from South Sudan, bordering Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Uganda. Most members of this ethnic group are Christians. The Keliko people have a motto that means ‘together we can’. South Sudan officially seceded from Sudan on July 9, 2011, making it Africa’s youngest recognized  country. This move to independence marked the end of decades of conflict, as well as a surge in determination to rebuild and move forward. For  the Keliko it was a time to press into the translation work they started in 1985. But renewed civil unrest in South Sudan in 2016 forced many of the Keliko people to relocate to refugee settlements in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Uganda. “Time went by. War came in.” This is how Bishop Semi Nigo of   the Keliko people of South Sudan described the delay in his church’s long struggle to get the Bible in their own language. Decades earlier, Bishop Nigo’s  grandfather had courageously started a Bible translation project, but war and unrest kept halting the effort. Despite these hardships, the Keliko continue   to persevere with joy, and many are passionately supportive of Bible translation. On August 11, 2018, the Keliko New Testament (with portions of the Old Testament) was officially dedicated! The ability to access God’s Word in their language is finally a reality.

 When peace is restored to South Sudan, Keliko believers anticipate returning home to impact their community, their neighbors and even their nation with the life-transforming power of the gospel. Like the Keliko people, may we never give up seeking the power and wisdom of Scripture. Let us make Lent a time to gain strength and spirit through God’s Word.

In His Ministry

Ajith Varghese Achen



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