Friday, 24 July 2015

An Appeal for Prayer for a Landmark Event in the Life of our Church

Dear People of God,

I write to share with you my excitement over a forthcoming landmark event in the life of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa.

In just over six weeks' time, representatives from all 28 dioceses, including experts in strategic planning, will hold two meetings, back-to-back, in which the Province will seize a Kairos moment to review our Vision and Mission as a church, to strategise around ways to implement our priorities, and then to make practical decisions on how to implement them in a manner that is productive, holistic and transformative.

Five years ago, the Province adopted a Vision and Mission Statement. In it we declared that the Anglican community in Southern Africa seeks to be:
  • Anchored – in the love of Christ
  • Committed – to God’s mission
  • Transformed – by the Holy Spirit
We added that across the diverse countries and cultures of our region, we seek:
  • To honour God in worship that feeds and empowers us for faithful witness and service
  • To embody and proclaim the message of God’s redemptive hope and healing for people and creation
  • To grow communities of faith that form, inform, and transform those who follow Christ.
Within the context provided by that statement, we declared our Provincial priorities in the succeeding decade to be: Renewal for transformative worship; Theological education and formation; Leadership development; Health (HIV and AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis); The environment; Women and gender; Protection and nurture of children and young people; and public advocacy.

In the week beginning September 14th, we will first hold a Provincial Planning Meeting which will be in the nature of a mid-term review of our Vision and Mission: we will assess how much progress we have made, we will look at whether there are areas we need to tweak and we will plan how to add value to the life of the Church. We will then take proposals from the Planning Meeting to the regular meeting of the Provincial Standing Committee which follows. There we will decide as a collective on the proposals and on how to finance and put into effect the proposals we adopt.

One of the reasons for my excitement is that at the meetings we will combine the wisdom of representatives of the Dioceses with the expertise of an impressive line-up of experts in strategic thinking who will join us for the Planning Meeting.

Please join me in praying for the participants in these meetings and for their success, using the following prayer regularly in the weeks leading up to and including the meetings:

Almighty God of love, truth and wisdom,
by whose grace we discern your call to our generation,
celebrating when you are glad,
lamenting when you weep:
give your church love and power to act with you,
joining in your mission to the world,
and revealing your justice and peace throughout all creation,
to the  glory of your name;
through Jesus Christ our crucified, risen and ascended Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God now and forever.
To those who will be taking part, I wish you safe travel and look forward to your enthusiastic participation.

God bless you,

†Thabo Makgoba

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Tablets Donated to College of the Transfiguration Students

The Anglican Church of Southern Africa’s e-reader project has donated tablet computers to the Province's residential seminary, the College of the Transfiguration.

This followed meetings with the Rector of the college, the Revd Dr Vicentia Kgabe, on incorporating and exploring new methods of teaching and learning through technology. The tablets will remain the property of the college and the project will be evaluated in October, shortly before the students commence their final exams.

PHOTO: The tablets were handed to second-year students and academic staff by Mrs Lungi Makgoba (centre).

Thursday, 18 June 2015

Archbishop Makgoba welcomes Pope Francis's letter on 'Our Sister, Mother Earth'

People of faith need to focus on the moral and spiritual elements of the crisis brought about by rapid climate change, Archbishop Thabo Makgoba of Cape Town said today in response to Pope Francis's encyclical on the issue.

In a statement issued from Cape Town, the Archbishop said:

“I would like to thank Pope Francis for this historic, ground-breaking letter. I look forward to studying it in more detail.

“Across Africa and in other developing countries, we are already suffering the impacts of climate change, and the people hit hardest by severe droughts or storms are in our most vulnerable communities.

Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Archbishop Thabo fasts for the climate

Archbishop Thabo Makgoba travelled to Bonn, Germany early in June for United Nations talks held to prepare for the next major international climate conference in Paris in December.

The Archbishop, who chairs the Anglican Communion Environmental Network, attended the talks in his role as a Global Climate Ambassador for the ACT Alliance, an international coalition of more than 140 churches and affiliated organisations working to create positive and sustainable change in the lives of poor and marginalised people.

During the meeting, he fasted for a day. He explains why:

Friday, 5 June 2015

Reflection on Corpus Christi

From the chapel at Bishopscourt, Archbishop Thabo Makgoba reflects on Corpus Christi against the backdrop of a major conference on Ecclesiology and Ethics: The state of ecumenical theology in Africa, and of the 2015 World Economic Forum on Africa.

Readings referred to:
Psalm 116: 11-18
Hebrews 9: 11-15
Mark 14: 12-16, 22-26