Elijah Arok

My name is Elijah and I am a pastor and one of the “lost boys of Sudan“. At the age of ten, God spoke to my heart through a missionary who presented the Gospel of Jesus Christ to me. Confessing my sin and acknowledging my need for the Savior, I repented and placed my faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as my only hope for salvation.

In November of 1981, I made a public profession of my newfound faith by getting baptized. As I became involved in a local fellowship in Wernyol, in Jonglei State, I continued to grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ. Gradually, I was discipled by the people from the Episcopal Church of Sudan (ECS).

Elijah ArokAfter the war broke out in 1983, I joined SPLA/M (Sudan People’s Liberation Army/Movement) in 1986 at the age of 18, which required me to be separated from my family. After losing many members of my family in the war, including my parents and young wife, I eventually became a chaplain. God used me to minister to suffering people in the refugee camps, including many of the lost boys with whom I am still in contact with. While recovering from multiple wounds, God eventually brought another Christian young woman into my life to care for my surviving three-month-old daughter. My wife Elizabeth and I now have seven biological children, and twelve orphans from family members who were killed in the war. Elizabeth and our children currently live in Eldoret, Kenya.

In 1997, the ECS sent me to Dimma, Ethiopia, where later on, I was ordained into the ministry in 1999. Eventually, God used an American (Steve Harriett), with African Christian Missions International (ACMI), to encourage and assist me to pursue further studies. In 2000, this led me to move to the refugee camp in Kakuma, with my family, where I received more pastoral training. After finishing college at the International School of Missions (ISOM), God led me away from ECS. In 2004, I joined hands with other Sudanese Church leaders to train Sudanese pastors through ISOM; a ministry that I continue to fulfill along with my shepherding responsibilities at an evangelical church ministry.

Also in 2004, God raised up other godly men to assist me as I began my studies at International Christian Ministries (ICM), in the Africa Theological Seminary program. In 2008, I graduated and received my Bachelor of Arts in Bible and Theology. In 2011, I was accepted at Shepherds Theological Seminary in Cary, North Carolina, U.S.A., and graduated in 2013 with a Master of Arts in Christian Ministry.

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From my last ministry in the field…

The deadly fighting in South Sudan continues, and our Evangelism TEAM is focusing on the Sudanese refugees inside and outside the twenty-three camps spread across northern Uganda.

dsc_0001Over 1.5 million South Sudanese have run to neighboring countries in the region, half of that population located in Uganda. To a greater extent, two-thirds of South Sudanese refugees living in Uganda have arrived since the outbreak of violence in Juba December 15, 2013, through July 2016. Currently, the influx shows little sign of abating, with more than 116,000 South Sudanese refugees having fled to Uganda in 2017 alone.

Relief organizations are are trying to increase their response to the humanitarian emergency in Adjumani Western Nile. Jesse Kamstra, the country representative of The Lutheran World Federation (LWF) in Uganda, asks angrily,” How many people have to die until the international community wakes up?”

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