An exploration of unrest
by An assembly from the Culham St Gabriel archive
Suitable for Key Stage 2
To explore this large African country’s problems.
Preparation and materials
- Have available a globe or map to locate Sudan and a flip chart or whiteboard on which to make notes during the assembly.
- Gather a selection of images of Sudan and have the means to display them during the assembly.
- Create or print out a large Sudanese flag.
- Cut hand shapes out of paper for all attending the assembly. This could be done as a class activity with a preparatory discussion on the subject of 'helping hands'. In what ways do we help each other, our neighbours, the community, the world?
- Have available some reflective music and the means to play it during the ‘Assembly’, Step 4 – perhaps choosing a track from the album The Rhythm of the Saints by Paul Simon.
- You will also need a candle and means of lighting it.
- Familiarize yourself with the passage about peace in Hebrews 12.14–15.
1. Using the globe or map, point out where in the world Sudan is.
Ask the children to tell you what they know already about Sudan, noting their answers on the flip chart or whiteboard.
2. Explain that, despite the Middle East peace plan of 2006, Sudan – in particular, Darfur – continues to be under threat of war and the people are suffering as a result.
3. Show the selection of images of Sudan.
Discuss the idea of peace . . . What is it? Is it just 'an end to fighting' or is it something more?
What would it mean for the people of Sudan? How could peace be achieved?
4. Ask the children to write their thoughts on the hand shapes.
Attach the hand shapes to the flag as a gesture of 'helping hands', while playing the chosen piece of reflective music.
Light the 'peace candle' as a prayer offering.
Time for reflection
Ask the children to think about the world and all its troubled regions.
Read Hebrews 12.14–15.
Pursue peace with everyone, and the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springs up and causes trouble, and through it many become defiled.
Explain that all religions encourage their followers to live in peace. Equally, many people have no religion and yet would also strive to live in peace and harmony. So why do so many people cause suffering and destruction?
For Christians, peace is a vital 'pathway' to God, through the teachings of Jesus. What might Jesus say about peace?
Father of all,
Before the throne of grace, we remember the people of Sudan.
Give us the heart to feel for those who wander the world seeking a home to call their own.
Give us the mind to strengthen those who feed the hungry, clothe the naked, welcome the stranger.
Give us the spirit to pray for those who walk in the valley of the shadow of death.
May all the nations obey you, all the peoples love you and the whole Earth rejoice in you,
Father, Son and Spirit.
Salisbury Sudan Link Prayer
A track from the album The Rhythm of the Saints by Paul Simon