Congo-Kinshasa (MNN) — In the Democratic Republic of Congo, fighting between rebels and security forces puts civilians at risk. Tens of thousands have fled their homes since May 22, when the rebels launched their biggest offensive in a decade. Heavy fighting reached the outskirts of Goma, a provincial capital city.
The Human Rights Watch has previously documented atrocities committed by the rebel group, known as M23.
The DRC government accused the Rwandan military of fighting alongside the rebels, and Rwanda has accused the DRC of firing missiles into its territory.
But the Islamic State has carried out several terrorist attacks as well, often on refugee camps.
Sam Todd with Wycliffe Associates says in the northeastern part of the country, the fighting has halted almost all ministry. “We’ve seen pictures of just mass graves, trenches being dug, and people being thrown in. I’ve got a picture of a truck that probably has at least 100 coffins stacked up. And the violence is just brutal. It’s not just gunfire, it’s all sorts of machetes and just disturbing things.”
“It’s meant to instill fear and terror.”
But Wycliffe’s partners still want to distribute the Bible to people in their own languages. Todd says. Part of the Wycliffe model is local churches operating the translation projects themselves. “They know that people are most impacted when they read God’s word, and they hear God’s word in their unique language. It’s one of the sentiments that I hear often and all over the world is, ‘Now for the first time in my life, I know that God speaks my language.’”
Pray for an end to the violence in the DRC.
The header photo shows M23 rebels near Goma in 2013. (photo courtesy of Gabe Joselow, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)