Download the PDF version here (e-mail and printer-friendly):
Pastoral Letter: 4th Quarter 2022
AFM of SA National Calendar 2023 – Including the Latest Updates!
NOB Empowerment Visits 2023: Dates & Venues – You are Invited!
We are all in various stages of concern about the persisting electricity crisis in South Africa. I was invited and participated in a meeting between the State President, Eskom and religious leaders on Tuesday, 17 January 2023.
The general feeling amongst the faith leaders was one of disappointment and even disillusionment. I had the opportunity to speak and urged the State President to ensure that we see decisive and constructive action regarding the shortage of electricity. As faith leaders and citizens of this country, we are no longer appeased by promises. The crisis is at least 25 years in the making, as Government received a report on projected power shortages in 1998 already. Load shedding started in 2008 and today, 15 years later we are even worst off.
I urged Government to rise above party political interest and internal fighting, which causes any progress in this matter to be delayed and paralyzed, whilst the citizens of South Africa and especially the poor suffer. As a church we are willing to support our government, we understand that this is a complex problem, but we now need to see decisive action.
I encourage all our Pastors and members to keep on praying. We are people of prayer and people of Hope. The electricity crisis cannot be solved in a few weeks, or with the flick of a switch, but we as believers and citizens of our beloved country South Africa should keep our government accountable and expect constructive action.
2. BAPTISM DROWNINGS
We recently became aware of a spate of drownings during baptism ceremonies around the country. It seems that these tragic occurrences usually involve streams and rivers or even the sea. According to reports, most of the drownings happen in Gauteng, Limpopo, the Eastern Cape, Mpumalanga and the Free State.
Whilst we understand that some church traditions prescribe that the baptism of believers should take place in streams or rivers, we plead that great caution must be applied. We also understand the fact that some churches are faced with challenges due to inequalities and a lack of resources.
As the leaders of the AFM of SA, we call on all churches who practise the baptism of believers after conversion, to act responsibly, exercise wisdom and give clear and practical guidance to their Pastors and congregations on how to take the necessary precautions during baptism. As a rule, baptisms should not be conducted in water where the person performing the baptism and or the person who is being baptized, cannot stand effortlessly and firmly. Baptisms should also not be conducted in places where there are strong water currents present. Where possible baptismal pools, swimming pools, or inflatable pools should be used.
As churches and church leaders, we must continue to preach the Gospel of Jesus unashamedly, whilst ensuring that the lives of all our members are always safeguarded.
3. NOB EMPOWERMENT VISITS
Keep The Fire Burning
We are looking forward to visiting and spending time in ministry and impartation with Regional Pastors, Assembly Leaders, Governing Body Members, Departments and Members during the Regional Empowerment Visits. The Theme for 2023 is: KEEP THE FIRE BURNING.
The National Office Bearers (NOB) felt led to focus on the Spiritual Foundation of Missionality and to spend time on who we are and how we live as Holy Spirit-filled people and church. We will focus on (i) Our Calling as Believers and Pastors; (ii) Daily time with the Word and in Prayer; (iii) The Character, Values and Norms of Holy Spirit filled People; and (iv) Keeping the Fire Burning in your Finances.
Below we share the dates and venues for the NOB Empowerment Visits of 2023:
The Programme for Friday and Saturday is available from our website:
We are looking forward to seeing you there!
4. SAVE THE DATE: NMF CONFERENCE
Kindly download a Circular for more information regarding the upcoming National Men’s Fellowship Conference from 19-21 May 2023:
4. MIL WORKSHOPS
The year commenced with two successful MIL workshops in Cape Town and Pretoria. The dates and locations for the remaining MIL workshops in January and February are as follows: Amanzimtoti (30 January – 1 February) and East London (6-8 February).
To view all scheduled MIL Workshops for 2023, kindly refer to the AFM of SA National Calendar: https://afm-ags.org/afm-of-sa-national-calendar-2023/
We are looking forward to welcoming the new group of MIL participants!
All AFM Pastors and Assembly Leaders are welcome to also attend the MIL Workshops. The cost is R250 (for attendees that are not registered MIL candidates) and includes lunch and snacks. Further, AFM Pastors attending the MIL workshop can earn 10 PCD credits.
For any enquiries, feel free to contact the National MIL Coordinator:
Dr Christo van den Berg