I greet you all in the name of our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ. I hope this letter finds you and your family well. I am thankful for your partnership in the gospel of Christ. It is always my prayers that the Lord may bless you and grow you in pursuing him in all that you do.

The Work of God in a Pastor’s Home: The Mngunis

It has been ten years since I got married to my beautiful bride. The Lord has granted us two beautiful kids: Zanecebo Thapelo Mnguni and Emihle Mnguni. The first name means “prayer paves a way where there is no way” and Emihle means “God’s ways are always the best.”

I was raised in an ungodly family. My family members were slaves of worshiping dead people. By the grace of God, he has saved me and granted me grace to be married to a lady who was raised in a Christian family. It is our prayer to raise our children in the ways of the Lord. We have been intentional about having a family devotion every day. The Lord is been gracious with us. We have managed to go through a book by Marian Schoolland, titled “Leading Little Ones to God.” This book has short chapters and provides discussion questions at the end. We have discussed questions from the fall to the second coming of Christ. Our children have really enjoyed the book and they have asked many questions. We are continuing to pray that the Lord may open their hearts to believe in the gospel.

The Work of God in a Pastor’s Life: Pastor Chris

The Lord has been gracious to me. He has given me good health in the most part of my serving in the church plant. I do not take it for granted that good health is helpful in church plant work. However, lately, I have been struggling with a pain in my left arm. I hope it is not contributed by the stress concerning the building project. I am planning to visit the doctor to find out the cause.

Paul instructs Timothy to guard his life and his doctrine. It has been thirteen years since I graduated from the seminary. I still believe in the sufficiency of Scripture in all aspects of life and ministry. I still believe that planting a church does not need gimmicks but a man who is faithful in teaching the word of God. Our lecturers used to encourage us to preach the word. As students, we thought it might not be enough to just preach the word. But I can say over the years I am still convinced we need to faithfully preach the word.

Relying on God’s word is not only for church planters. It is also for families. The Scripture is also sufficient in building a godly family. It is been ten years now being married to my bride (Happy). The Lord is still the same yesterday, today, and forever. His word and requirements for spouses has not changed (Ephesians 5:22–31). I am still striving, by the grace of God, to love my wife as Christ loves the church and she is striving to submit to me as the church submits to Christ. We are praising God for his kindness to us.

The Work of God in Youth Ministry: Brother Enoch

We are thrilled to announce that our youth ministry is back in action! Every Friday, we gather to explore the gospel: delving into its meaning, addressing common misconceptions, and learning how to effectively share this incredible message of the gospel. We are planning special event on 23 September 2023. We are hosting a church picnic right here on our premises, aiming to connect with and reach out to teenagers in our community. It is a wonderful opportunity to share the love of Christ with others.

The Work of God in Children’s Ministry: Sister Happy

We currently have nine children ages 4–9 attending the Sunday school every Sunday morning. We have five teachers who rotate each Sunday. We are grateful to God for raising faithful teachers. We are working through the Generations of Grace curriculum.

We would love to have two groups, and separate the kids from 4–7 years from 8–12 years. It is challenging to teach younger kids and older kids together, but due to not having enough classrooms, we have all the kids in one group now. Yet even in the struggles with space to store our Sunday school resources properly and lack of an extra classroom, our kids are always excited and eager to learn God’s word. The Sunday school class has also strengthened their friendship bond. We are grateful to God.

The Work of God in Schools: Brother Johannes

The Lord has commanded us to make disciples of all nations everywhere we go. Brother Johannes has been an encouragement to me. He has used his teaching career as an opportunity to share the gospel with the students in his school.

We praise God for the ministry opportunity he has opened at Brakpan High school, where Johannes Choma, an elder at Grace, works as a teacher. He has started a Bible study during breaks and the attendance has been good. Most students are responding to the gospel message. Many of them have been testifying that they have been going to churches, but it is their first time hearing such teachings. One student came with a long list of questions concerning things that are practised at her church: prophecy, preaching in tongues, people rolling down, etc.

One student, a devoted Catholic, asked a question after one of the Bible studies: “Are Catholics saved?” She then elaborated that what she has been learning on this Bible study is completely contrary to what is taught in Catholic, and she gave her life to Christ. Her mother allowed her to visit our church, but she was told she will remain a Catholic.

One boy shared that his mother told him that, according to a particular prophet, they must arrange and do an ancestral ceremony (spill animal blood, etc) for him. He was very concerned and shared this asking for prayers. It is encouraging that his mother allows him to visit our church and he has been consistent.

A few of these students have asked their parents to visit our church and we praise God that some parents have allowed them. Most of these students, are from broken families. Their parents are not believers. It is our desire that the gospel will reach even their parents. Our prayer is that God will use his word to convict and save these students and their parents. We pray that the Lord may help us transport them to church or find sound biblical churches closer to them, where we can place them.

The Work of God in Sola 5: Pastor Chris

Grace Baptist Church is part of the Sola 5 association of churches. Sola 5 is grounded on the five solas of the Protestant Reformation: that is, scripture alone, faith alone, Christ alone, grace alone, to the glory of God alone. As a church, we realise that we do not have many options of associations that are holding on to sound doctrines. Sola 5 keep us in check. Sola 5 also provides opportunity to fellowship with men that the Lord has used over the years.

I had a privilege to be hosted at the recent conference in Windhoek with Pastor Ronald Kalifungwa, who pastors Lusaka Baptist Church, and Pastor Chipita Sibale, who pastors Kabwata Baptist Church with Conrad Mbewe. I had an opportunity to ask their wisdom in church discipline issues, preaching, etc.

I can attest that, after attending this conference, the gospel is growing throughout the African continent. The church in Africa is working in planting and training capable man who are being send out to plant churches in cities, townships, and villages. The Lord is not looking in one church to do all the work. Hence, we have partnered with these churches for the advancement of the gospel.

The Work of God in Women’s Ministry: Sister Mwewa

The ladies at Grace Baptist Church Daveyton have been growing in their study of God’s word through the book of 1 Peter. They decided on reading a book of the Bible in its entirety, learning about the author, audience, and purpose of the book. Studying 1 Peter verse by verse has allowed for a thorough exploration and a deeper understanding of the book.

Our ladies’ meetings have created a space for sweet fellowship among the sisters in Christ. It has been a great joy to see the grannies in our church joining in and showing hospitality by opening their homes. This has fostered a beautiful example of intergenerational relationships and the body of Christ working together.

It is encouraging to see the dedication and preparation of the ladies’ teaching the Bible study. By being faithful stewards of God’s word, they are helping to equip and edify the women in our church.

Our prayer is that the study of 1 Peter will continue to be a source of growth, encouragement, and transformation for all the ladies at Grace Baptist Church, Daveyton.

The Work of God Despite Persecution: Pastor Caleb

Since commencing our building project towards the end of July 2023, we have experienced a range of emotions: joy, sadness, and hope. We find joy in the realisation that the Lord has brought us this far since we initiated our building plans and submitted them to the municipality over three years ago. It brings us joy to see the Lord’s guidance as we finally embark on this project, witnessing the fruits of our labor and prayers. We are also grateful for the support of many likeminded churches who pray for us and partner with us on this journey.

However, we must acknowledge our sadness. Despite obtaining all necessary municipal approvals for our plans, some members of the community persist in their opposition to having a church in their neighbourhood. This sadness deepened when they took matters into their own hands and vandalised our initial work. We have made efforts to engage with community leaders, but they appear unwilling to meet with us unless the entire community is present. Nevertheless, we hold onto hope for the work that lies ahead. Our hope is grounded in the promise of Jesus Christ, who said, “On this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matt 16:17–19). We are encouraged that we have been able to continue our work without further interference from the community. However, we are not ignorant of the schemes of the devil. We decided to build a temporal zinc structure for our tools and security.

Join Us in Prayer

We invite you to join us in praying with us in the following ways.

  1. Pray for guidance and wisdom as we seek to resolve the issue with the community, that we may receive the right counsel and reach a mutually beneficial resolution.
  2. Pray for the provision of the outstanding funds needed to complete the building project successfully.
  3. Pray that we may continue to shepherd the church of Christ effectively while juggling the demands of the building project.
  4. Pray that we will fix our eyes firmly on Jesus, the Lord of the church, as we navigate these challenges and uncertainties.

Thank you for your prayers,

Chris Mnguni