Last week a video from the nonprofit organization Invisible Children about the atrocities and war crimes of Joseph Kony, head of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) in Uganda, went viral. The video is part of a campaign to find and stop Kony. From the Invisible Children website: “Invisible Children uses film, creativity and social action to end the use of child soldiers in Joseph Kony’s rebel war and restore LRA-affected communities in Central Africa to peace and prosperity.” A worthy cause: Yes. However, there are many layers to this complicated problem. And many opinions about how to respond. Watch the video with young adults in your parish or campus ministry and then have a discussion:
- What did you learn from the video?
- What surprised you about the video?
- What might you do/where might you turn to learn more about the situation in Uganda and Central Africa?
- How might you keep this issue — and other issues of peace and justice — in the spotlight once the initial spike in Internet and media attention fades away?
- How might your group of young adults or you individually help the children and communities who have suffered at the hands of Kony and the LRA?
- How might you continue to stay informed about the conflicts in Africa?
Here’s an article from Catholic Relief Services about some of the important work its supporting to help child soldiers reintegrate back into society in Uganda. Here are a few other resources for this discussion and increasing general knowledge about what’s happening in Africa:
- A photo gallery on the Lord’s Resistance Army and its history of violence in Central Africa
- A look at other issues that Ugandans face today
- Q&A about Kony and the LRA