The United Congregational Church of Southern Africa, operating in Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe, has noted with deep concern the alarming escalation of conflict, gloom and discord in South Africa, with much of the ire directed at and centred around the person and actions of President Jacob Zuma. The ill-judged events that unfolded on Thursday 30 March and Friday 31 March with the cabinet reshuffle, has left a revolting stain on the social fabric of the nation, pushing the country to a dangerous precipice of social strife and unrest. As expected, South Africa is already witnessing the negative impact of the decisions and actions of the President, the very person entrusted with safeguarding the collective interest of the State and all the peoples of South Africa.Read more
The joy comes in participating and witnessing healing, growth and new life. This is the core of the message of Jesus that is fully revealed during the Season of Lent and Easter. John 10:10 I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.Read more
When sharing the news of my move to Cape Town, I pause to take in the shear excitement and awe that people convey to me. In response to this news, I’m often given a list of tourist activities to partake in and various sights to visit. Many tourists share their stories of unparalleled relaxation and breathtakingly beautiful accommodations while visiting the motherland. To them, Cape Town is paradise. However, scores of South Africans who struggle daily from the unaddressed injustices that flow from apartheid see this land quite differently. Accordingly, travelers who look underneath the city’s glamorous surface learn of the often-unreported realities of Cape Town citizens who live in unspeakably horrible conditions.Read more
Lectionary Selection: John 11:1-45
Prayers for South Africa:
God of Grace.
God of love, peace, and everlasting healing,
We thank you for the hope that you enrich us with on a daily basis. Even for the new mercies that we see every morning.
Bless us with the energy and the resolve to proclaim and live your love and your justice throughout all of our experiences and encounters. By your grace and mercy, make it possible for humanity to feel your holy and healing power through our collective ministry. We pray that through our ministry your redemptive love will restore broken lives in every corner of the world, and particularly among the women of Ons Plek in Cape Town, South Africa.
We know that your love will overcome fear and your mercy can restore life and hope to every segment of the world where people live in squalor and in misery. We ask that you restore broken lives and mend fragmented families through the work of Ons Plek. Give continued strength and wisdom to the staff of Ons Plek that they may be agents of transformation and joy for the young women of Ons Plek and their families.
We ask these blessings in the beloved name of Jesus, Amen.Read more
Mary Schaller Blaufuss, United Church of Christ Global Sharing of Resources Team Leader, just returned from a trip to Lesotho and South Africa. She was there attending the African Christian Health Associations Platform (as part of the UCC's work with IMA World Health) in Lesotho. While in the region, she visited the CWS Africa sub-office in South Africa and witnessed their work with refugees. She also visited with Global Ministries partners in South Africa and Lesotho and with our mission personnel in Lesotho, Mark Behle.
In October 2016, a group of Disciples women participated in a Woman-to-Woman Worldwide pilgrimage, coordinated by Global Ministries to South Africa and Ghana. The women were especially moved by the ministries of two partner organizations, the Theological Education by Extension College of Southern Africa and the Smoked Fish Microcredit project of the Christian Council of Ghana. These ministries are being promoted while the delegates visit Disciples women around the United States and Canada interpreting their experiences during the coming period of study, prayer, reflection, and advocacy.Read more
The new school year of 2017 at Inanda Seminary has begun. The boarding school campus is buzzing. The grade 12s who completed their exams at the end of last year have just heard the good news of their results.Read more
Pero los que esperan a Jehová tendrán nuevas fuerzas; levantarán alas como las águilas; correrán, y no se cansarán; caminarán, y no se fatigarán. Isaías 40:31
Si bien nuestro trabajo en el Colegio de Educación Teológica por Extensión (TEE) en Johannesburgo, Sudáfrica ha sido una experiencia gratificante y conmovedora, la mayor parte del tiempo no estábamos seguros del impacto de nuestro trabajo. Pero tuvimos algunos recordatorios del alcance tales como Tsepo, un pastor y estudiante de último año en el programa de diploma en Ministerio, quien con emoción compartió lo mucho que ha aprendido y cómo lo ha aplicado a su ministerio. Él nos dijo que, a la edad de 63 años, ahora planifica inscribirse en el programa de licenciatura del grado teológico. Sí, momentos como ese, nos recuerdan el libro de Isaías y la fuerza añadida que viene de Dios.Read more
Bonganjalo Claude Goba
December 21, 1943 - September 21, 2016
Carol Ann Cannon Gilley
November 18, 1936 – September 19, 2016