Over the next two months, we invite you to intercede with us for leaders from Francophone Africa. Thankfully, COVID-19 transmission and mortality rates have remained relatively low among the 22 countries in this region. However, the long-term economic impact may prove severe, especially in countries already facing extreme poverty and political instability. Learn more about Francophone Africa here. This week, please join us in prayer for Jean Musavuli in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The most populous French-speaking country in the world, the DR Congo is home to nearly 102 million people from 250 ethnic groups. Approximately 94% of Congolese are Christians: 30% Catholic, 27% Protestant, and 37% other Christian (mostly Evangelical). Seventeen years after the Second Congo War (1998-2003), armed conflict among rebel groups persists in the northeast. The tenth Ebola outbreak in the DR Congo ended in June, after killing nearly 2,300 people in two years. So far, the country reports just over 5,000 COVID-19 cases and 89 deaths.
Jean is pursuing a PhD in Old Testament at the Oxford Centre for Mission Studies (UK). His research interprets Nehemiah’s work from a postcolonial perspective, focusing on the rebuilding of the wall, the socioeconomic and religious reforms, and the sending away of foreign women. Jean has served for several years at the Congo Initiative’s Center for Church Renewal and Global Mission, and teaches Bible and Theology at Christian Bilingual University of Congo. Jean and his wife Linda have three children: Paul (9), Nathan (5), and Joshua (3).
Jean shares the following message:
Dear ScholarLeaders Community,
I would like to first thank the ScholarLeaders Community for your continuous prayers for my country, family, and studies.
My country has gone through many challenges. Since the installation of the new president almost two years ago, there has not been significant change. The main reason is that the former president is still very influential in the parliament and controls over 50% of government ministries.
There have been demonstrations again and again, both in Western and Eastern Congo, for many reasons, including the failure to pay government employees’ salaries, the corruption of some leaders, and especially the massacres in eastern Congo (where I live) by the ADF-NALU militia. Demonstrations have also been conducted against UN troops, which have been accused of supporting, rather than opposing, the rebel and militia groups, and are thus seen as supportive of the massacres.
In addition, we have seen rising COVID-19 cases, spreading from Western to Eastern Congo. Although universities have resumed with safety and hygiene requirements (including masks and social distancing), kids have remained at home since March. Churches have also reopened with strict observation of COVID-19 response measures.
As we thank God for many good things, such as the end of Ebola in Eastern Congo, would you please join us in prayer for:
1. Political stability through the independence of existing power, if possible, so that the government may endeavor to implement its vision for the nation;
2. An end to rebel and militia groups, which are killing thousands without stated reasons for their evil actions;
3. The collaboration of the population with the COVID-19 response teams and government, for the end of the pandemic nationally and globally;
4. The protection of my family (and many others) in this context of insecurity, which often affects my research;
5. Wisdom in relation to family, research, teaching, and ministry in a society full of need (in every dimension);
6. For the Church of Christ, as well as the Christian Bilingual University of the Congo and other Christian organizations, to continue to play their role amid all the atrocities, for Christ’s name and kingdom.