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Sam Childers – Machine Gun Preacher

In this digitized age, it sometimes appears as though the entire human kind is living in cyber space i.e., everybody has access to internet and social networking occupies a huge space in the daily lives of everyone. There are no worries except the failing economies around the world, but that certainly is not the case unless we are happy to live in an oblivion endeavoring to forget the huge populace on earth which is able to call itself human only for the namesake.

Outside the world of multinational companies, Wi-Fi cafes, shopping malls and elusive economic growths, we still have, on this very same earth, countries that are fighting internal wars, where the biggest challenge every day is surviving through it. Sudan is one of these countries where an organization called Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) is the name that is synonymous to child abuse. And there is one man, called Sam Childers, who has become the voice of the children of this country.

Born in 1962 in North Dakota, USA, Sam Childers grew up to be a motorcycle-loving, alcoholic, outlaw drug addict who spent a major part of his life in wayward wandering. But, one day he made a resolution to change the path of his life. He became member of Assembly of God church in 1992 and went to Sudan, Africa in 1998. It was here that he learned that over 30,000 children had been abducted by Joseph Kony and the LRA, and forced to become either child soldiers or sex slaves. And the cycle was self-sustaining as thousands of more children regularly lost their parents in LRA attacks, thus becoming orphans with no one left in the world to care for them.

After this first trip, he founded an organization called Angels of East Africa along with his wife Lynn, in a village in South Sudan where they house and educate such children. The orphanage is unique as it replies to the LRA terrorism with armed rescue missions. The thrilling and inspiring story of his life is told by himself in a book called “Another man’s war”.

The movie version of his life based on his biography is recently released. Directed by Marc Forster, the movie called “Machine Gun Preacher”, (though it varies in many instances from the facts in the book and is much more dramatic), is worth watching just to get a glimpse of the horrible realities and events happening on this very earth that we most of the time take for granted while safe in the bubbles of our daily routine.

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