Despite President Charles Taylor's exile in August, Liberia is awash in weapons toted by crazed teenagers on drugs—the country's Generation AK-47. And hundreds of thousands of Liberians remain displaced within the country's borders and in West Africa—more than 300,000 refugees are in the capital, Monrovia.

But the church in Liberia is beginning to bring healing to the war-ravaged land. Monrovia has started to see signs of stability in recent weeks.

"The people are happy that God has miraculously saved their lives," said Robert Cuppah of the Evangelical Church Union of Liberia, the local partner of SIM (Serving In Mission) International. "By example, we must be a people of hope, and Jesus Christ is the basis of our hope."

Christian businessman Gyude Bryant, an active layman of the Episcopal Church in Liberia, became the president on October 14. One of Bryant's top goals is for child soldiers to be "detoxified and detraumatized." Another is to establish a truth and reconciliation commission in response to gross human-rights violations during the Taylor years.

Even with an international peacekeeping force and, until recently, a small American military presence, simple survival remains the top priority for most people.

"If you have money, you can find food," said Cuppah, a pastor in Monrovia's Sinkor district. Rice, beans, split peas, and corn meal are increasingly available, but he says few can afford them.

Roughly 38 percent of the country's 3.1 million people are Christians. Along with the general population, clergy are scattered and on the run as clashes continue in rural areas, said Beyan Bakar, secretary general of the Association of Evangelicals of Liberia (ael), which comprises 45 denominations and more than 3,000 local churches. ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

May
Subscribe to CT and get one year free.
From Issue:
Read These Next
Also in this Issue
Hallowed Haunts Subscriber Access Only
"Church organs, Hell House, and The Blair Witch Project in the news"
RecommendedWas the Samaritan Woman Really an Adulteress?
Was the Samaritan Woman Really an Adulteress?Subscriber Access Only
We know her as sexually immoral. Her community would have known otherwise.
TrendingForgiveness: Muslims Moved as Coptic Christians Do the Unimaginable
Forgiveness: Muslims Moved as Coptic Christians Do the Unimaginable
Amid ISIS attacks, faithful response inspires Egyptian society.
Editor's PickThe March for Science Is Willing to Get Political. But Will It Welcome Religion?
The March for Science Is Willing to Get Political. But Will It Welcome Religion?
How evangelical scientists square their place in the global movement.
Christianity Today
Bringing Order from Chaos
hide thisNovember November

In the Magazine

November 2003

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.