AFRECS Annual Conference – Oct 21-23, 2016 – Des Moines, IA



AFRECS Annual Conference

Marriott Hotel
West Des Moines, Iowa
October 21-23, 2016

“We need constructive support from our Sudanese brothers and
sisters outside the country as we seek to
restore peace and rebuild trust in South Sudan.”
— Rev. Peter Gai, Chairman, South Sudan Council of Churches

Program Information:

This conference will bring together Sudanese from the
Diaspora and from South Sudan with American friends of South
Sudan and Sudan to work for peace and reconciliation in the
world’s youngest nation.

We will ask ourselves:

  • Where are the opportunities to support the Diaspora in
    the USA in its
    efforts for peace and reconciliation in South Sudan?
  • How can the friendship of Americans contribute to
    peacemaking in South Sudan and Sudan?

You can expect:

  • Inspiring stories of how partnerships of South Sudanese
    and Americans, even during these last thirty months of
    conflict, are working together for positive outcomes
  • News of South Sudan from African guests
  • Opportunities to meet and work for peace with friends
    dedicated to building a stable nation in South Sudan
  • Workshops led by experts with experience in mediation
    and peace building
  • Learn what the Commission for National Healing, Peace
    and Reconciliation and the Justice, Peace and
    Reconciliation Commission are doing to train and enable
    peace mobilizers in South Sudan
  • Hear from Sudanese leaders about their challenges,
    learnings and successes as the work to build reconciling
    congregations in the American Diaspora
  • Learn ways the US government is seeking to build peace,
    and what the church is doing to speak for peace to

Distinguished Guests:

  • Bishop Samuel Enosa Peni: Diocese of Nzara, South Sudan
    and Chairperson of the Justice, Peace and Reconciliation
    Commission of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan and
  • Bishop Joseph Garang Atem: Diocese of Renk, South Sudan
  • His Excellency Pa’gan Amum Okiec: former Secretary
    General of the Sudan Peoples Liberation Movement, signer
    of the Transitional Peace Agreement, August 2015
  • Dr. James A. Leach:  US Representative, Iowa 1st
    Congressional District, 1997-2007; retired Chairman,
    National Endowment for the Humanities
  • Dr. Dane F. Smith: former Senior Advisor in the Office
    of the US Special Envoy for Darfur, Deputy Chief of
    Mission in Sudan, and Ambassador to Guinea and Senegal
  • Mother Harriet Baka Nathan, Provincial Mother’s Union
    Coordinator, South Sudan
  • The Rev. Phil Groves, Continuing Indaba Project,
    Secretariat of the Anglican Communion, London

Conference begins Friday at noon and closes with
Eucharist at 10:15 on Sunday.


Cost: $100 registration fee covers full
attendance.  Meals are included (Friday lunch and
dinner; Saturday breakfast, lunch and banquet; Sunday


Diaspora attendees, seminarians, and students are automatically
granted full scholarship.
Please register and identify yourself as
scholarship-eligible to help us plan the meals.  You may make a
free-will donation at your discretion.  Any surplus
funds at the end of the conference will go to the work of
the Justice, Peace and Reconciliation Commission in South

Hotel: West Des Moines Mariott,  1250 Jordan
Creek Parkway, West Des Moines, Iowa 50266
Telephone: 515-267-1500, Conference Rate: $109 (plus tax)
per night

Click here to book your room at the group rate.

IMPORTANT: To get the special rate, which applies to
the nights of October 20, 21 and 22, you must book NO LATER
THAN Monday, October 3. 
Please book online or by
phone directly to the hotel.  This rate will not be
available on travel websites.

Air Travel:

Fly to Des Moines
International Airport (DSM). For best fares you are urged to
book ar transportation by August 31. If you fly to DSM and
stay at the Marriott Hotel the hotel will provide
complimentary transportation to and from the airport.  For best service
call the hotel ahead of time and give them your flight

Conference Registration:

To register online:
Online registration is a two-step process.

Step 1: Please Enter Your
Registration Information

Step 2: Please make your
payment online via PayPal

The conference registration fee is $100 per person.
An automatic scholarship for conference fees is available to
students and members of the Diaspora.
To register by mail:
Click here for a printable registration form,
and mail it and your check to:

PO Box 12026
3737 Seminary Road
Alexandria, VA 22304


For program information, contact AFRECS at

For logistics information, contact