Ivory Coast: Call for prayer

Not too long ago, the European cable channel Euronews showed a one-minute sequence of a crowd, mostly women, gathered in a stadium in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, praying for their country. They held their hands toward the sky, calling upon a power beyond the human to save the country. Those praying women awoke me to a more active attitude toward the conflict in Ivory Coast. I could join my prayer to theirs and be active, instead of just being a spectator. 

A country on the West Coast of Africa, Ivory Coast was once both a French colony and a model of stability in Africa. For quite a few years, however, it has been experiencing political unrest. During the long reign of Felix Houphouët-Boigny (1960–1993), the country enjoyed economic prosperity. The cocoa and coffee plantations, in need of intensive labor, attracted hordes of people from neighboring countries, mostly Muslims from Burkina Faso and Mali. 

Descendants of these immigrants are still seen as “foreigners.” So, with the passing of Houphouët-Boigny, a power struggle began. 

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Giving—a way of living
February 14, 2011

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