Tuesday 30 April 2019

ACSA's youth rep does us proud in Hong Kong

Archbishop Thabo continues his reflections on the meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council being held in Hong Kong: 

The sessions at ACC-17 are progressing well and the daily rhythm is now established. Hong Kong's weather changes at any time – today is cloudy.

Today's main presentation is on intentional discipleship. In the photo you can see Fr Jerome Francis, our clergy rep to the ACC, and our youth rep, Ms Basetsana Makena, with me, and down the page you can see Basetsana doing us proud, interviewing the Anglican Communion Office directors of mission cluster group this afternoon. Below that you can see her at her meeting table and engaging others during tea breaks.

We listen to stories of faith around the globe and how, although there are challenges of money and lack of growth in some parts of the Communion, on the whole there is growth and excitement about mission in most provinces.

We also looked at a framework for catechesis for intentional discipleship in the Anglican Communion. Full of energy today, we were told that although we see longing, hurt and pain in the world, we are called to bring life, to change lives and to make disciples. The Holy Spirit will give us the heart of Jesus, the heart of discipleship, we also heard.

In the discussion of the Anglican Communion's five marks of mission, key issues raised were: a call for a prophetic voice on Argentina, where the number of women murdered is high; respect for the rights of refugees and migrants; and the challenges of climate change.

Monday 29 April 2019

ACC-17 opens in Hong Kong - and an appeal to ACSA Dioceses

The ACSA delegation to ACC-17:
the Archbishop, Ms Louisa Mojela  and Canon Jerome Francis
Archbishop Thabo reports on the opening of the 17th meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC-17): 

#ACC-17 has officially opened with great fanfare and fine music, preaching and liturgy and worship. Archbishop Justin Welby of Canterbury preached powerfully, urging us to look beyond our bounds as we participate in God’s mission in the world.

Archbishop Paul Kwong, our gracious host and chair of the ACC standing committee, spoiled us with a reception of many courses, attended by numbers of people, including local leaders of other churches. A great day, full of energy although we went through it at a pace.

I could not help but note the plight of many domestic workers here in Hong Kong, who are on the whole migrants, sitting on the pavements of the city during their day off. They reflect the two diametrically opposed faces of Hong Kong.
With Sr. Patricia

Today we listened to various presentations and continued our Bible studies – on the road to Emmaus – and explored our theme of going deeper into international discipleship. The Secretary General, Archbishop Josiah Idowu-Fearon, also presented his report to ACC.

I ended the day with a swim as the gym was full this evening. I also had a long chat with Sister Patricia of the Community of the Holy Name, a delightful and brilliant religious. It really is my wish and hope that each diocese in our Province should have a religious order.

A choir from Hong Kong
ACSA lay delegate Louisa Mojela

The opening service of ACC-17

Friday 26 April 2019

Archbishop Thabo blogs from an Anglican meeting in Hong Kong

ACC-17 is being held at a hotel outside central Hong Kong. 
Archbishop Thabo blogs from a meeting of the Anglican Consultative Council (ACC). The council is one of the four "Instruments of Communion" of the world-wide Anglican family, the others being the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Lambeth Conference and the Primates' Meeting. The ACC is the only body which includes bishops, other clergy and lay representatives.

After a two-hour delay at OR Tambo, we have arrived safely. Louisa Mojela from our Province and I are both on the council's standing committee and so have a meeting tomorrow before ACC-17 starts. It is labelled ACC-17 because this is the 17th time the body has met. The first meeting took place in Kenya in 1971 and the last time it happened in South Africa was when ACC-9 met in Cape Town in 1993 during the archiepiscopate of Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

The ACC is the most representative Anglican body in the Communion and receives reports of commissions, networks and the Anglican Communion Office in London. It also passes resolutions on Mission, Ministry and Anglican polity. The last meeting was in Zambia in 2016.

Louisa Mojela is our lay representative, Canon Jerome Francis is the clergy rep and I represent the episcopate. Louisa's and my terms both end now, and Canon Jerome has another three years. This time round, we will be joined by a youth rep, the Provincial Executive Officer, the Ven Horace Arenz, who will represent us on matters of administration, and Canon Rachel Mash of Green Anglicans, who will represent us on environmental matters.

It is warm here and it drizzled just a bit when I took my walk after dinner this afternoon. We have a full programme and ask for your prayers for our Province's delegation and everyone meeting here.

Wednesday 24 April 2019

Responding to widespread flooding in South Africa

Archbishop Thabo today sent messages of solidarity and condolence to Dioceses affected by flooding in different parts of South Africa: the Diocese of Johannesburg after flooding in Alberton, Mthatha because of the dire situation in Port St Johns, Natal after floods in areas around Durban and Zululand over those in Empangeni.

He writes: "Our hearts go out to those affected and those who have lost loved ones. We send our love and prayers to them, our condolences to the families of those who have died, and wish a speedy recovery to those injured or displaced. We are concerned about the weather patterns in areas where there is not usually as much rain as they have experienced.

"We appeal once again for Anglicans to pray for those affected and and to show practical support and solidarity through food, shelter and other assistance that is needed."

Sunday 21 April 2019

[VIDEO] eNCA reports on Archbishop Thabo's Easter homily

Read the full text of the Easter homily at St George's Cathedral, Cape Town

Archbishop Thabo Makgoba's Easter sermon

(File photo)

Easter Vigil – St George’s Cathedral, Cape Town
Ez. 36:24-28; Ps 114; Rom 6:3-11; Lk 24:1-12

Christ is risen, He is risen indeed! Alleluia!
Ever since I was a little boy, I have continually felt attracted by all the details of our Easter celebrations and of the Easter service, and am especially inspired by the pervasive feeling of optimism and hope that characterises Eastertide.

Thursday 18 April 2019

Archbishop calls on South African politicians to “tone down” election rhetoric

Election observers from religious and civil society groups are calling on political parties in the Western Cape to “tone down their campaign rhetoric,” warning that “character assassination is as devastating as physical violence.”

In a statement released today by Archbishop Thabo Makgoba, who chairs the Electoral Code of Conduct Observer Commission (ECCOC), he said:

Graduates' achievements are built on the sacrifices of the 70s generation

A graduation address at the University of Cape Town: 

Good morning, greetings to you all, and thank you so much for the honour and privilege of allowing me to address you. Thank you to the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Mamokgethi Phakeng, and your  executive for inviting me.  Congratulations to the parents, relatives, sponsors of those graduating, and to you, the graduates. on your achievement. We are immensely proud of you.

Sunday 14 April 2019

Displaced and living "like wild animals' – a neglected place where only the Church is visible

Delivering supplies

Archbishop Thabo travels to an isolated area in the Diocese of Niassa where there are no NGOs, no post-Cyclone Idai assistance and where the plea is for "comido" (food):

DAY THREE: At 6:40 am Bishop Vicente gathers eight of his clerics and church wardens to join us for Morning Prayer. We are later joined by two cathecists, and afterwards pay a courtesy call on the district governor, as has become the norm.

Then we drive to the marketplace to buy seed and rice, as we did last week in Sofala Province when I visited the Diocese of Lebombo. As in Sofala, I learnt that solidarity has to be accompanied with food. The marketplace is busy and when the vendor realizes we are buying in bulk and for what cause, he gives us a good discount.

Friday 12 April 2019

Bishop McKenzie’s grave has drowned

Archbishop Thabo continues his visit to the Diocese of Niassa in northern Mozambique, visiting the Bishop, the Right Revd Vicente Msosa, and his people after Cyclone Idai:

DAY TWO: After breakfast and Morning Prayer – and reading Jeremiah 28:17ff – at our Quelimane guest house, I return to my room to catch up and study the disaster intervention plan from Niassa Diocese. As intimated yesterday, this diocese has dealt with flooding, food and health disasters before. They are amazingly well organized and deserve all the support they can get.

Our departure to a district 30 km outside Quelimane city is delayed because of past conflict in the area, which means we need special permission to travel and a dispensation from the Governor. We get this and it commends us to the three district governors whose areas through which we will travel.

Thursday 11 April 2019

Visiting the Diocese of Niassa in the wake of Cyclone Idai

Bishop Vicente gives a briefing on the visit
Following a visit to Beira and surrounds in the wake of Cyclone Idai last week, Archbishop Thabo has this week been in the Diocese of Niassa in northern Mozambique, visiting the Bishop, the Right Revd Vicente Msosa, and his people. His reflections:

DAY ONE: The alarm rang at 4:20 and by 5 am Uber is here to pick me up and take me to Cape Town's airport, where we board for Johannesburg at 5.50. Heavy mist delay the flight – fortunately all flights, and we were in Maputo by 11:20. Along the way we meet Bishop Zipho Siwa, the Methodist Church's Presiding Bishop, and his team, who are also visiting congregants affected by Cyclone Idai. Boarding for Quelimane is scheduled for 11:30 but we finally depart at 14:15 and while waiting I read a piece in the Anglican Theological Review on preaching.

Thursday 4 April 2019

'Archbishop, we are hungry' – An appeal from Mozambique

Engaging people, via a translator, on their experiences.
Archbishop Thabo blogs on the final day of his visit to the disaster-stricken area around Beira in the Diocese of Lebombo:

Wednesday April 3: The words, “Archbishop, we are hungry,” stayed with me overnight as I battled with sleep even after a long day on Tuesday. The instruction from Jesus replayed in my mind, especially during Compline – “Feed my lambs,” and “Feed my sheep,” (Jn 21:15-17), as did Jesus's words in Matthew's Gospel that when we feed those who are hungry, we feed him. (Mt 25:37-40).

Wednesday 3 April 2019

Visiting the hidden and forgotten in cyclone-devastated Mozambique

With Bishop Carlos Matsinhe, Archbishop Thabo Makgoba is visiting areas of the Diocese of Lebombo hit by Cyclone Idai. Transport is being provided by a helicopter of the South African National Defence Force, which is helping Mozambican authorities with relief efforts. Also in the party were the SANDF Chaplain General, the Revd Brigadier General Monwabisi Jamangile, and Matlotly Mototjane of the PEO's office, formerly a senior disaster management official in Lesotho. The Archbishop continues his blog: 

Tuesday April 2:  We started the day with breakfast together and said a shortened Morning Prayer, reading from Jeremiah 17:19-27. The dining hall was full of all sorts of NGOs' reps and rescue people.

How to help the people of Mozambique >>

Tuesday 2 April 2019

Visiting Sofala Province, Mozambique in the wake of Cyclone Idai

St. George's, Beira, on Monday
 Archbishop Thabo blogs from Mozambique, where he is visiting Bishop Carlos Matsinhe and the Diocese of Lebombo: 

Monday April 1 - After waiting for four hours to get clearance to enter Mozambique airspace, we left Pretoria for Beira, accompanied by the SANDF Chaplain-General and the Administrator in the PEO's office, Matlotlisang Mototjane (who is also a disaster management expert).

We were received in Beira by a representative of the governor of Sofala Province and Col Zurich of the SANDF, and then were whisked into St George’s Anglican Church, where Bishop Carlos Matsinhe was leading Mass.