Dear family of St Paul’s United,
I find myself humbled and filled with such excitement at what is happening in our community at this time. The church is growing, not only in numbers attending, which in itself is exciting, but we are receiving new members into our community on an ongoing basis. However, as we have received new members we have had several people leave to move to other parts of the world. In the past couple of months we have said goodbye to Gudrun Kushke, Pom Hutchinson, Ellwyn and Alison Kent. It is always sad to say goodbye, but they go with our best wishes for the future.
One of the best ways to build friendships is over a meal. It is a way in which from time in memoriam people have bonded and it was no exception with Jesus. In fact the centre point of our worship is the symbolic sharing of the last supper in Holy Communion. So it makes sense that if we want friends to hear the Gospel it should be in the context of a meal.
Many ministers I meet try to play down the importance of numbers in church. I think that this is quite silly and, to be frank, a little disingenuous. It is important for the church to be growing because there are people out there in the wide world who really need to know the Gospel and measuring church attendance tells us about whether we are reaching them or not. So is is without any compunction that I am able to say that we are growing. In fact our numbers show that over the past 18 months we have seen a significant growth in weekly attendance at services.
We have been looking at the possibility of launching some sort of youth programme at St Paul’s United over the past year and were not sure in what direction to go. After much prayer and deliberation it came time to commence with this year’s confirmation course. To this end it was decided to run a Youth Alpha season with the very new media that has been made available from Alpha SA.
For several years Don and Susan Elliot have been coming to the mountain for their holidays. Well at last they have made this place their home and from mid June will be settled in their home on the edge of Ebenezer Dam along with numerous cat and dog family members. The exciting news about their permanent arrival in this part of the world is that Susan is currently studying to become an ordained priest and will be available to assist with ministry here in Haenertsburg and Magoebaskloof.
It all began with a simple prayer from our Ministries Development Group. “Lord, we need an evangelist. Please will you raise up somebody who can bring the good news to the people of the mountain.” What we did not expect was to receive 32 of them! What happened?
The first Emmaus walk in our region took place at Lofdal centre at Ofcolaco on 11th – 14th May 2017. Twenty-six ladies were treated to a weekend of much fun and laughter, and a few tears of joy.
Green Anglicans is an Anglican church based civil society organisation that aims to ‘safeguard the integrity of Creation and sustain and renew Earth’.
Angus Buchan listened to the word of the Lord some years ago while visiting the Kruger Park. He was told to cancel all his appointments and “Mentor to men” In his own words taken from one of his devotions books “A Mustard Seed” published in 2014, he says “We had our first men’s conference and saw 240 men arrive. The next year 600 arrived. The following year there were 1060. This year we had 7 400 men and we are expecting 23 000 men next year. That’s one huge army of God.” Little did he know God’s plans for 2017.