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Widespread killings in capital, seminary classes halt
30 January 2014

The Bangui Evangelical School of Theology (BEST) has served the Church in the Central African Republic and across Africa's 21 francophone countries for 37 years. BEST is a seminary for Africans, conceived by Africans, and located in the heart of French-speaking Africa. Its library is one of the most important in French-speaking Africa. But today, classes are disrupted and the 12-acre campus has become a refuge for displaced and traumatized people.

Violence began in late December 2012 causing the evacuation of most missionaries. Widespread killings in the capital of Bangui beginning 5 December 2013 caused classes to stop. Two students have been killed in the violence that seems to spare no one.

BBC NEWS: Central African Republic crisis in 60 seconds

The administration of BEST has worked out an alternate plan to finalize the majority of courses for the school year. The final-year undergraduate students plus the Master's and Doctoral students will move to the neighboring country of Cameroon to be taught in rented facilities. A new round of courses will begin there shortly. This bold plan, if carried out as envisioned, will allow BEST students to carry on with their studies in a peaceful atmosphere, and this possibility gives everyone a measure of hope.

PRAY TOGETHER

Please join with us before the throne of our Almighty God on behalf of the Central African Republic, the Church, and the Bangui Evangelical School of Theology (BEST).

  • PRAY for God's mercy on the people of the Central African Republic, who have suffered intensively. People from both of the major religious factions - Christian (majority of the population) and Muslim (about 15%) - are traumatized. PRAY for a cessation of the revenge attacks and the beginning of healing.
  • PRAY for the families of two students from BEST who have been killed in the violence.
  • PRAY for SIM Professor of New Testament and Greek, Judy Hill, who has had to leave the country but continues to have contact with her students, receiving term papers and thesis chapters. Professor Hill has served in the Central African Republic for 22 years.
  • PRAY for the logistics involved in transferring BEST's teaching to Cameroon.
  • PRAY for divine wisdom and grace for Dr. Nupanga, the seminary president.
  • PRAY for the new interim President of the Central African Republic who seeks ways to bring stability to the country, a place that the UN states is on the verge of falling into genocide.
  • PRAY that the intervention of the African Union, European Union, and French military forces will be sufficient to bring a cessation of violence, giving the refugees of Bangui confidence to return to their neighborhoods and try to rebuild their lives.

Students at BEST Bangui CAR
BEST has served the Church in francophone Africa for
37 years, training its pastors, teachers, leaders, missionaries
and lay people.
Thank you for your prayers which will encourage our brothers and sisters enduring this crisis. The men and women who are trained at BEST are francophone Africa's hope for the future. They bring the wisdom of the Word of God to bear in their cultures, churches and communities. Thank you for praying for them.

Resources about BEST:

Download BEST brochure (3MB)

French website: BEST

English website: BEST






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