South Sudan is a country with an estimated population of 8.2 million and has Juba as its capital. Juba has the population of 250, 000. The bordering countries of South Sudan are Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic and Sudan. South Sudan is a landlocked country which means it has no access to the oceans or ocean-accessible sea. Landlocked countries have the disadvantageous situation of needing to rely upon neighboring countries for access to seaports.
The people of South Sudan have been under different colonial regimes from 1821. The country became an independent nation only on July 9, 2011.
One of the major natural features of South Sudan is the River Nile whose many branches have sources in the country. The region also contains many natural resources such as petroleum, iron ore, copper, chromium ore, zinc, tungsten, mica, silver, gold and hydropower. The country's economy, as in many other developing countries, is heavily dependent on agriculture. Some of the agricultural products include cotton, groundnuts (peanuts) sorghum, millet, wheat, sugarcane, cassava or tapioca, mangos, papaya, bananas, sweet potatoes and sesame. Besides agriculture people depend much of livestock. The three main religions are Christianity (60.5%), African Traditional Religion (32.9%), and Islam (6.2%), other religions (0.4%). Although more than the half of the population is Christian, South Sudan is disturbed by many civil wars and ethnic clashes and it is one of the poorest countries of the world.
MSMHC Mission in South Sudan
The first group of MSMHC - Sr. Shanti Antony, Sr. Rita Kullu, Sr. Theresa Krocha, and Macrina Thongi reached the South Sudan Mission on 23 September 2011, accompanied by Mother Mary Thadavanal. The MSMHC works in collaboration with the Salesians of Don Bosco and two other women congregations: Daughters of Mary Help of Christians (FMA) and Sisters of Mary of Kakamega (SMK).
The sisters there are engaged in pastoral, educational, developmental and health care ministries, which involves many challenges, deprivations, sacrifices, extreme climatic conditions but to crown all these struggles and challenges the Lord blesses them with deep interior joy of being with him and working with him and for him.
The MSMHC sisters take care of the 40 bedded hospital with 21 staffs working in the hospital. They are also fully involved in the pastoral and educational activities of the mission centre.
They teach in the school and help to look after other seven Don Bosco Schools situated in villages. They take care of the lepers and take special care of the women groups in the villages. On Sundays the Sisters go to villages for Mass and whenever there are no priests they conduct Sunday services in the villages. They are also responsible to take care of the Church at the Centre, its sacristy, altar servers and alleluia dancers.
As a whole, sisters are fully involved in every activity of the parish and mission, serving the poorest of the poor.
The present community in Sudan consists of Sr. Shanti Antony, Sr. Donna Lyngdoh, Sr. Monica Adaphro and Sr. Prema Tirkey.
Ferrando Convent (MSMHC Convent)
C/O Don Bosco Mission
Tonj South County
Tonj State, South Sudan