For more than 120 years an area the size of Europe has been known as the African Free State, the Belgian Congo, Zaire, and today the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Stretching from the Atlantic coast to the borders of Uganda and Rwanda and Tanzania in the east and Sudan and Angola to the north and south, this nearly ungovernable territory is home to a multitude of tribes and languages, huge potential of human talent, intelligence and imagination and vast natural resources.
Why, then, is such a wonderful part of God’s creation the subject of Joseph Conrad’s ominous novel The Heart of Darkness (1899)?
The even more crucial question is why over a hundred years later, as Andrew Mitchell MP reported in this Agenda column on November 28, is the Eastern DRC still “a humanitarian catastrophe”?
A very hearty amen to this final question. It remains a matter for daily prayer. Read it all.