Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ
Greetings to you all in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!
We, the family of Bishopsbourne are well, and wishing the Diocesan family good health. Our wish is that God may pour His Grace to fill you anew as you prepare your spiritual life for the first and second coming of Christ during this Advent. May this Advent be a healing memory that brings hope to all.
We thank God that Esona our grandchild will be doing Grade 1 in 2015 at St Andrew’s Prep and Buhle Grade 2. We are also pleased that Cwayita will be doing Grade 10 at DSG and Anda Grade 11 at St Andrew’s College. We are awaiting the results of Zipho (who was doing her second year BA at Rhodes University) and Aphiwe (who was doing his third year IT at NMMU).
We thank God for your prayers, support in various forms and your generosity. We are proud of you as the diocesan family.
As a family we wish you all in the Diocese a happy Christmas and a prosperous new year.
Sixteen days of Activism
South Africa is taking part in the global campaign of 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children, which runs from 25 November to the 10th of December.
We urge the Diocesan Family to earnestly pray for women and children who suffer abuse in our communities. As the Church we need to be vocal about the evil of abuse and strive to live in love, harmony, fellowship, peace and joy, a community that cares and support the survivors of violence. We need to be a community that seeks God’s guidance in our everyday life, a community that affirms one another and a community guided by principles of chastity, humility, stability, faithfulness and live a Christ centred life.
The Revd Pumza Tiso has been made Rector of St Paul and St Cyprian Qumrha with effect from 11th November 2014.
160 Years of Faithful Witness:
Over the weekend of 22-23rd November 160 years of Faithful Witness was marked with the launching of a Memorial Lecture on Saturday at the Cathedral in honour of the late Bishop David Russell. This was given by Prof Barney Pityana, and entitled “David Russell and the Church for our times. A Faithful Witness.”
He challenged the Diocese: “Twenty years into democracy and a constitutional dispensation in our country, and 160 years since this diocese was established how do we let free the energy and idealism and resilience that has formed this church for this land. That is the challenge for ours and future generations.” (B. Pityana: Nov. 2014)
On Saturday afternoon Chris Mann and Julia Skeen presented through mixed media The Blessed Company of all Faithful People, melding and meshing the memories of the past with the energy of God and our place in God’s purpose.
On Sunday morning as an act of witness the Diocese processed down High Street from the Drostdy Arch to the Cathedral entering to celebrate “Christ the King”. Bishop’s Sunday is an innovation that will become part of the fabric of our life as a Diocese. Jubilant and joyful celebration with praise and thanksgiving for God’s abundant grace and love! Prof Barney Pityana the guest preacher contextualized our waiting for the coming of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, and how we need to nurture and love each other as we look into the future as a Diocese.
To clergy of the Diocese: may you be encouraged to use the Stewardship and Giving booklet (which will accompany the Umbuliso) in house-groups, prayer meetings and anywhere and everywhere to remind the people of God that our being and everything that we are is from God, and we are only stewards of God’s abundance. Let the Diocese be reminded that in this capitalistic world our substance and existence depends on the generosity, grace and love of Almighty God.
Use laity and deacons to proclaim the Day of the Lord, and may this Diocese allow the Holy Spirit to dictate and direct by opening the financial wells of prosperity to God’s glory and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, who did not consider himself above humankind but humbled himself and became man.
The Lenten Appeal for next year will go towards fundraising of the operational capital of the Diocese. Material will be sent in due course.
St Agnes Guild
St Agnes Guild will be celebrating 65 years of existence in the Diocese next year. They will start off their celebrations with a Diocesan Commemoration Eucharist service at 09h00 on Saturday 24 January 2015 at St Augustine, Njwaxa in Alice.
Bernard Mizeki Men’s Guild
The Guild feels that they would want a boost for all their endeavours of 2015 and decided to start the year with a revival service on Sunday 18 January 2015 at St John & St Chad Zwelitsha.
Family Life and Education 2010 and 2013 Synodical Resolutions
We will forward you the programme that you will be using from Ash Wednesday to Corpus Christi in 2015.
We thank God for the intervention by national government and provincial government for putting our municipality under administration. On the 5th December we were invited by the Makana municipality to attend a stakeholder meeting which was very informative. We have pledged together with Rhodes University and civil society to be involved in the turn-around strategy of the challenges faced by the municipality. We were pleased to learn of the water infrastructure being re-done with new water pipes and everything that will perfect our water system. Ms Pam Yako from national government will be working with municipal officials to upgrade their accounting and accountability systems. We were also informed that a forensic audit will be done to eradicate any form of corruption which may exist and to put in place sound administration systems within 18 months, and that work has already begun. Let us continue to pray for the national and provincial government, the Makana municipality and stakeholders’ partnership, as we are in the process of bringing a turnaround strategy in the Grahamstown city and the broader Makana municipality.
We request that you continue upholding those who will be ordained to priesthood and their families in your prayers. Also please pray for us who will be conducting the Retreat and for Archdeacon Penrose Mpumlwana who will be the preacher at the ordination service.
We pray for Revd Margaret Fourie who had a knee replacement operation recently.
The Revd Gordon Johnson’s daughter, Gail passed away recently, and her funeral service took place on Saturday, 6 December 2014 at St Martin’s Gonubie.
The Revd Chris Dano’s son Mphakamisi passed away on Wednesday the 3rd of December 2014 and his funeral service will take place on Saturday, 13December 2014 at 10h00 in the Methodist Church in Peddie.
Please uphold them in your prayers
The Diocesan office closes for the Christmas break on Thursday, 18 December 2014 and will re-open on Tuesday, 6 January 2015.
For the Archbishop’s latest Ad Laos click here.