Thursday 26 March 2015



On Tuesday March 24 2015, the National Church Leaders Forum – which was recently launched as part of the South African Council of Churches renewal program – announced its intention to address the increasing dissonance within the South African socio-political space.

As a body of church leaders across the broader South African spectrum, the Forum is alarmed at the perceived "cancer of corruption" rapidly chipping away at the core of the South African moral fibre from every angle of our society; the creeping disregard for the Constitution as well as the debilitating instability playing itself out at key government and parastatal institutions. These all reflect a worrying trend that, if left unchecked, could prove dire for the future stability of this country.

The church leaders are calling on South African churches to commit themselves to pray and act for the advancement of the South African post-apartheid promise. This call is extended to all South Africans. The goal is to realise a just, reconciled, prosperous and equitable society; free of hunger and want, free of racial, tribal and gender prejudices, free of corruption and deprivation, and with enough food and shelter for every citizen.

The SACC will shortly be announcing its participation in the War of Poverty, in collaboration with all three tiers of government, building on existing pilot programs with proven success.

It is clear that the church body cannot achieve this on its own, and in light of the national crisis experienced, and the urgent need to restore and raise up the great South African promise of a reconciled and prosperous society with enough for all, the National Church Leaders Forum calls on all willing South Africans to observe three special moments of prayer in the next two months. 

These moments of prayer will take place on Good Friday April 3; On the Eve of Freedom Day, April 26; and on The Day of Pentecost, May 24.

On Good Friday April the 3rd, the Forum intends to pray to ease the load of pain being experienced in our homes, communities and the nation.  As a society, a time for reflection is required on the various ills that plague our society, including but not limited to wanton rape and domestic violence, abandoned families and children without care, fearsome crime that is holding society (especially women and children) hostages at home and unsafe in public places, and rampant corruption in government and in business which compounds the challenges of poverty and deprivation.

On April 26, the Sunday before Freedom Day:

The Church leaders call on church members to recognize the 21st Anniversary of Democracy, and on the occasion to pray for the promise of South Africa: The post-apartheid promise of a just, reconciled and equitable society, free of racial, tribal and gender prejudices, free of corruption and deprivation, and with enough food and shelter for every citizen; and for each child born to grow to their God given potential.

The call is to pray for the fullness of freedom to come of age at 21, that the road towards overcoming the conditions that deny us the joy of the promise of South Africa, may be paved with our efforts beyond Freedom Day 2015.

On the Day of Pentecost on May 24:

The Church leaders call on churches to use this major festival of the Holy Spirit to pray for God to empower their 2015 efforts to eradicate poverty in their midst, and for them to have the discipline to not participate in corruption, and the courage to rebuke those within their range who do corruption; even leaders in government and business.

To pray the 1897 prayer of Enoch Sontonga:
Yihla Moya oyiNgcwele, usisikelele thina lusapho lwayo (iAfrika) -
Come Holy Spirit and bless us children of Africa;
Morena boloka sechaba sa heso!

The National Church Leaders Forum hopes that all the people of South Africa and all those who reside within its borders will join in prayer on those days, in an effort to ensure that as this great country of ours comes of age, it reclaims its position as a beacon of hope and equality.

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