How strange that Jesus commands us to “go and bear fruit,” then tells us that we cannot accomplish it without him. We have been mindful this year of our great need for the Lord to grow his church and to change the hearts of his people. We truly are helpless without him. This has led us to more dependence and prayer. We have been excited to watch him at work in his church. We have witnessed much of his provision and providence. To him be all the glory.

Training Men for Ministry

Grace Community Church has made it possible for two men to be The Master’s Seminary (TMS) trained online. What a gift! Richard will be their mentor, but TMS has done the hard work, and these men will receive a world–class education in ministry.

Daniel, our church vet, has been able to drop two days of work as well as weekends shifts in order to study. Our hearts are cheered by individuals in Nelspruit Bible Church (NBC) generously supporting Daniel financially to accomplish this goal.

Jabu has been a longstanding disciple with a humble and hungry heart. This year, friends in America paid for him to attend the Shepherd’s Conference in Los Angeles. He returned to South Africa a changed man, with his heart set on studying truth. This opportunity to study with TMS is a dream come true. This is Richard’s heartbeat. How he would love to exit this world with churches planted by faithful men teaching others about the one true treasure: Jesus Christ.


Richard always leaves the house with a spring in his step when he goes to elders’ meetings. The Lord has graciously knit together the hearts of these men as they pray and shepherd the flock. They are diverse in their gifts and complement each other remarkably well. We praise God for the joy of united elders. We have also just appointed our first two deacons. We are grateful for qualified, godly men.


Equipping the Saints

We have run several discipleship classes this year.

Fundamentals of the Faith. This required us to set up another table in our dining room to accommodate those who were interested. It has impacted many this year. Richard helps teach it with Richard Senna, a young man who was saved about five years ago.

African Traditional Religion (ATR). Most Africans are content to follow Christ and their ancestors. This syncretism is not true Christianity. Biblical teaching on this topic has confronted many with big choices. If they do things God’s way, they are bound to seriously upset their families who live in fear of displeasing their ancestors. We have been heartened by those who have gently and firmly chosen Christ alone, despite the significant consequences.

Financial Stewardship. We take for it granted that most people would make sensible financial choices. Those from the Charismatic movement have been promised that they deserve the best and their “breakthrough” will come. The result is that they are often in crippling debt. Others have had role models who limped along in poverty and were victims of unscrupulous debt collectors. Most have no father in the home to share their wisdom in money management. This was a popular and enlightening course run by Charles.

Biblical Counselling. Nine eager beavers completed the year-long, intensive biblical counselling course. It has been a delight to see the word of God impacting lives and changing whole families, including ours.


Three wonderful saints, all so different, yet all the same at the foot of the cross, were baptised recently. Ali grew up with a Muslim father; Maybeline was a “religious” Afrikaner; and Thando a student from the rural surrounds of Nelspruit. We continue to praise God for the unity and joy as we sit under the lordship of Christ. Our diversity puts his beauty on display, especially in a South African context.

NBC is growing in number, although we are still a small church with just over 100 people attending on Sundays. Midweek Bible studies are overflowing so the elders have some thinking to do. We will also probably outgrow our building soon. Please pray that the elders would make wise decisions that honour Christ.

Family News

Richard celebrated his 60th birthday this year. Our dear friends, Charles and Danielle Russell, whisked us away for a few perfect days in the bush. Danielle also turned 40 so we celebrated 100 years together.

Richard constantly needs to choose the best above the good. The fields are white unto harvest and he is joyfully busy investing in what is eternal. He hopes to complete his DMin in 2024 writing his dissertation on what Hebrews tells us about Christ our High Priest. “I am constantly encouraged and bowled over by so much evidence of God’s lavish grace in the lives of those he is bringing to NBC and transforming before our eyes.”

Telda has had a wonderful year starting up the ladies’ Bible study again. She has also thrived in teaching history for the NBC home-school co-op. “It has been enlightening to see God’s unfolding of ‘his story’ through a biblical lens, as well as learning about what various Christians and missionaries have done in trials throughout time. Their steadfastness has been an inspiration, no matter the century.”

Charlie P (age 10) continues to bring joy to our family. Although nobody will replace his blood brother, Andrew, Charlie P is enjoying no longer be an only child. He is quick minded and eager to please. His gift is still the piano where he won top prize in the annual Eisteddfod. “I am thankful that I recently collected my Peskett birth certificate. I am also thankful for my own dog, Biggles (who has the best doggy smile). Please pray that I would grow in godliness.”

Lethu (age 16) has been a blessed addition to our family. He views the world through a love for Christ causing him to be thoughtful, servant-hearted, prayerful and cheerful. He recently expressed a desire to be adopted so we are hopeful that his birth mother (who has no input in his life) will give consent so we can officially start the process. Richard and Lethu have been going through the Partners material. After the study, it is not unusual for them to be on their knees praying together for some considerable time. They are a great encouragement to each other. “I am thankful that Christ chose me at GYM (Godly Young Men) camp last year. I am also thankful for my family. Please pray that I grow in godliness and love the Lord more.”

Thank you for partnering with us in the joyful work of the gospel—for your prayers and practical support. We enjoy hearing your news and look forward to some of you visiting us.

Prayers of Petition

  1. Praise God for unity and growth at NBC.
  2. Praise God for the opportunity for Daniel and Jabu to train under The Master’s Seminary.
  3. Praise God for abundant financial support enabling us to further the work of NBC and take on an intern in 2024.
  4. Praise God for growth in maturity in Christ of those in NBC.

Prayers of Petition

  1. Pray for us to disciple the many newcomers.
  2. Pray for God to send people who will train and go into rural areas to plant bible teaching churches.
  3. Pray that the Lord would send us a teachable, humble intern who will bless our home.
  4. Pray that we would remain faithful.

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing…. By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples.

(John 15:4–8)

Thank you for your prayers.

In Christ,

Richard Peskett