Grand Island churches participating in the World Day of Prayer are: Saint Martin-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church, Island Presbyterian Church, Saint Timothy Lutheran Church, Saint Stephen Roman Catholic Church, and Trinity United Methodist Church.
All are welcome at this very joyful event which celebrates prayer, music, fellowship, and Africa!
The women of Cameroon wrote the prayers for this year’s event:
- Market women, typically referred to as “buyam sellams” (from the verbs to buy and to sell), who play a fundamental role in the Cameroonian economy helping to sustain their communities with their sales. Many are organized such as the Association of Women Entrepreneurs in Cameroon.
- Cameroon’s women and children who through human trafficking, are forced into modern day slavery that consists of servitude and sexual exploitation.
- The women of Cameroon facing domestic violence and sexual abuse, in addition to harmful traditional practices like genital mutilation.
- Gender issues resulting in the gap in women’s rights in theory and in practice, especially regarding women’s land rights.
- The growing rate of HIV infection among young women and girls.
The Republic of Cameroon (République du Cameroun in French) is located in the center of Africa above the equator at the extreme end of the Gulf of Guinea. It is bordered by Nigeria, Chad, the Central African Republic, in addition to Congo Brazzaville, Gabon, and Equatorial Guinea.
Cameroon is comparable in size to Papua New Guinea and slightly larger than California in the U.S. The official languages are French and English with a dominance of the French language. The national currency is the Franc CFA, which is the common currency among 14 countries of Central and West Africa who cooperate financially.
Due to its cultural and geographical diversity, Cameroon is often referred to as “Africa in miniature.”
Cameroon is culturally and ecologically rich, having approximately 240 local languages corresponding to the 240 ethnic groups. It also has great biodiversity, especially in regards to its flora. Due to its cultural and geographical diversity, Cameroon is often referred to as “Africa in miniature.”
Cameroon is rich in natural resources. The economy is based largely on agriculture and an estimated 70% of the population are farmers. Other sources of revenue come from forestry, minerals, and petroleum. As agriculture is an important part of the economy, land is one of Cameroon’s greatest resources.
As we begin our journey with the women of Cameroon, we learn about the social challenges that include the trafficking of children, particularly girls for sexual exploitation and slavery, gender issues that allow the perpetuation of violence against women and women losing their land rights. We will ask and seek answers to questions about possibility and justice in Cameroon. On Friday, March 5, 2010, we welcome the Worshipping Community to join the women of Cameroon.
Let’s turn our prayers into action.