In the 1990s and early 2000s, the civil war in Sudan and the fate of Christians there became the abiding international preoccupation of US evangelicals. Framing the complex issues in Sudan as straightforward matters of religious and racial oppression, the Americans became activists, determined to change US policy toward Sudan. One of the signature activities of the Sudan movement was the practice of “slave redemption,” in which activists purchased people who had been abducted by northern militias, bringing them back to their villages in southern Sudan. Overall, the conflict in Sudan was one aspect of a fundamental transformation, in which US evangelicals wove themselves into a global, self-consciously decolonizing church, built in part on a narrative of its own suffering.

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