So, I’m going to try to start doing an “Issue of the Week.” I’ll try to highlight important issues around the globe, bring up discussion, that sort of thing.

For this first one, I’ll start with Uganda, since we’ve been focusing on that as a community. For those who don’t know, northern Uganda has been divided by civil war for the past 20 years; almost 1 million people have been displaced due to the fighting. The rebels (the LRA) have resorted to kidnapping children and pressing them into fighting for them. Hundreds have been killed, and children in northern Uganda now commute — every night — from their villages into bigger cities, where they can sleep safely.

Fortunately, a cease-fire has been granted in the area, allowing SOME IDP’s (that’s insider-lingo for Internally Displaced Persons – basically refugees who stay within their own country) to return to their homes. But, as in most civil wars, this one isn’t ending easily. Right now, the leaders of the LRA are hiding in the jungle in neighboring Congo (which, I assume, would have lots of good jungle hideouts) and won’t turn themselves in until the International Criminal Court (ICC) drops charges against them.

The ICC won’t drop the charges, which makes this an international conflict. It’s my opinion that the ICC should drop the charges and allow for non-Western forms of reconciliation and justice — similar to the forgiveness that black South Africans showed to leaders there when apartheid ended. But that’s not the case.

Basically, there are two things that you, sitting at your computer reading this, can do. First, either go to InvisibleChildren.com or WorldVision.org and get involved: watch videos and get informed at Invisible Children, or send a letter to your representative at World Vision. This stuff does far more than you think. Second, sitting here reading this, take some time to say a prayer for peace in the region. Whether you believe in a Creator God who listens to you or not, it certainly won’t hurt anything, and the simple act of prayer makes issues more important to our own hearts.

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