Tuesday, 19 January 2021

RIP - the Right Revd Ellinah Wamukoya

It is with profound sorrow that I have to announce the devastating news that the Bishop of Swaziland in eSwatini, the Right Revd Ellinah Wamukoya, died today.

Bishop Ellinah was admitted to hospital late last week and was put on oxygen therapy for Covid-19. 

We express our deepest condolences to her husband, Okwaro Henry Wamukoya, their children and grandchildren. May her soul rest in peace.


Bishop Ellinah Ntfombi Wamukoya was elected to the position in 2012, becoming the first woman bishop in the Anglican Church in Africa. 

She was previously the Town Clerk of Manzini, eSwatini's commercial hub, having earlier served as the City Planner. She held a Master’s degree in Town and Regional Planning.

She had a history of serving in community offices and organizations, and had a long involvement with the Anglican Diocese of Swaziland. She was ordained priest in 2005. At the time she was elected bishop, she was Anglican chaplain to the University of eSwatini.  

In her Diocese, the Province of Southern Africa and the Anglican Communion, Bishop Ellinah was widely known for her advocacy of the integrity of creation. She was the liaison bishop for the environment in the Province of Southern Africa. 

In 2016, she was named by the BBC in London as one of the world's 100 most inspirational and influential women.

† Thabo Cape Town

Wednesday, 13 January 2021

Tribute to Dolly Mokgatle

The sudden death of Dolly Mokgatle, an accomplished entrepreneur and leader in both South Africa's private and public sectors, comes as a huge shock which has sent ripples of concern through the Anglican Church, of which she was a dedicated member.  

Dolly was a gentle giant who loved her church and people and a strong proponent of the empowerment of women and young people. She served the church quietly, among her appointments being a member on the board of the Bishop Bavin School, into which she poured resources in the attempt to save the school.
Her death has left her immediate and extended family distraught, the intensity of their emotional and psychological pain palpable. Her fellow parishioners have reacted with a level of anxiety as if they were attacked in a war situation. 
We add our prayers for the repose of Dolly's soul to those for the many clergy and lay people, known and unknown to us, who have died in our country and Church Province. 
Heal us, O God, of all our afflictions, fears, anxiety and perplexity, 
Keep us rooted in your love, faith and hope, 
Cover our sobbing hearts and souls with your healing balm
That we may remain as yours forever,
For your name's sake. Amen

Sovereign God,
the defence of those who trust in you 
and the strength of those who suffer:
look with mercy on our affliction
and deliver us through our mighty Savior Jesus Christ.
- Common Worship, CofE

Truly the eye of the Lord is on those who fear him,
   on those who hope in his steadfast love,
to deliver their soul from death,
   and to keep them alive in famine.
Our soul waits for the Lord;
   he is our help and shield.
Our heart is glad in him,
   because we trust in his holy name.
Let your steadfast love, O Lord, be upon us,
   even as we hope in you. - Ps 33:18-22

† Thabo Cape Town


Saturday, 9 January 2021

Homily - Memorial Service for Suzanne Peterson

Preached at an online service on January 8 in thanksgiving for the life of the the Rev. Canon Sally Suzanne Peterson, formerly of the Diocese of Grahamstown and of the Archbishop's office at Bishopscourt, Cape Town: 

May I speak in the name of God who is Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer. Amen.

Letter of condolence on the death of King Thulare III of the Bapedi

Dear Nape

I write on behalf of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa and my family, le Ditlou ka moka, to convey our condolences to the Royal family on the death of His Majesty King Thulare III. I recently sent him a Christmas message, to which he warmly replied, “Thobela, Thobela Archbishop, Merry Christmas, hope you are well. Kea leboga.”

As you know, the King valued our relationship and had hoped that I would play a part in his coronation to cement a long-lasting working relationship. I will miss seeing him annually at the Motsepe Foundation meetings and of course I will treasure the memorable dinner at the Pretoria Diocesan event. We are sorry and pained at this time of grieving. Even at his young age of 40, he did so much for the monarchy and Bapedi, for which we are grateful. I pray that his death will build the family and not divide it, leaving a legacy of a united Bapedi Kingdom after years of contestations.

We have entered a trying second wave of Covid-19 - please ask Dikgomo as a tribute to King Thulare III to be safe, to join in keeping hope alive and finally to defeat this cruel virus whilst we await the vaccines. As Christians, we know that the King is still with us. We know that King Thulare III is with his Maker, who is God of the living and the dead. We know that his Majesty is now reunited with the royal ancestors who have fought bravely for us to be where we are today. May his soul rest in peace and rise in glory. May his young family be comforted and consoled even in their bereavement.

Sebata Kgomo!!!

Arch Thabo Makgoba

Thursday, 7 January 2021

Covid-19 - A new, urgent call for prayer

Archbishop Thabo Makgoba has made a renewed and urgent call for prayer after the news that coronavirus infections reached a new daily record high in South Africa on Wednesday. 

The South African Department of Health announced that there had been 21,832 new coronavirus infections in a 24-hour period, the highest daily number since the outbreak of the pandemic. Noting the “grim milestone”, it said the total cumulative number of cases had risen to 1,149,591.

The Archbishop said in a note to the Bishops of the Province: “The second wave of Covid-19 is harsher and fierce. It calls for us to be more vigilant and perhaps make a call to our respective dioceses for a day of prayer again or to intensify soaking our countries in prayer.”

He also re-published prayers for use in the Province which he composed during the first wave of the pandemic last year. 

Daily noon-time prayer

God bless the world,

Give it wisdom at this time,

Grant us relief and release,

Be with those who are ill,

And bless the carers fighting this pandemic,

For Jesus Christ’s sake,


Prayer to conclude worship

Lord God, in this season of fear and uncertainty, 

as we face the threat of the coronavirus,

Grant us the wisdom and determination to walk in one another’s shoes,

The confidence and the humility to draw closer to you and to those affected,

Empower us to pastor those who are ill, to weep for the dead, to support the healers and to care for and love one another.

And the blessing of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, be with us all, now and always. 


Saturday, 2 January 2021

Ad Laos - to the People of God - A Message for Epiphany

Dear People of God, 

2021 is more than a new year: it presents us with a new dawn. The introduction of Covid-19 vaccines will help return our country to a base of normalcy that will allow us to address the inequality of equality and the inequality of opportunities. But even before that, 2021 gives us the breathing room to reflect on the lessons we need to remember about the year we’ld like to forget, 2020. [Text continues after Audio version]