The church has a mandate not just to provide spiritual upliftment, but also to provide social upliftment and restore the dignity of people.
Pastor Wayne Janecke said this at the inaugural service of the Manenberg Christian Ministers’ Fellowship (MCMF), on Sunday October 14, at the Silverstream Tabernacle.
The church service was also for the installation of the executive board. The board was selected during an election process, which had ballot papers and boxes, similar to that of the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC).
Mr Janecke said the MCMF is a body of evangelical, pentecostal and charismatic Christians “who are committed to the written Word of God in all that we believe and do”.
“We apply biblical principles to public life in order to promote Christian standards of morality and social justice,” he added.
So far, the MCMF has 27 churches affiliated to it. These churches will share resources and best practices, with the common goal to make a positive change in Manenberg.
The MCMF believes when churches are unified, the chances are greater for change to happen.
It will be active in four areas — gospel partnership, social issues, theological advocacy and world focus. Its ultimate aim is to train and develop leaders “with a love for the kingdom of God”.
A document explaining their role, reads: “It is our aim to establish a vehicle through which leaders can act as catalyst for change in our communities and beyond. We constantly seek to stay relevant in an ever changing environment where we understand that our local churches and communities are always in need of adapting to global trends and influence.
“This we seek to do through training and development of leaders; the establishment of local training facilities; workshops and other empowerment vehicles; and sharing of resources and expertise among our members.”
Guest speakers at the event included Ward 46 councillor, Aslam Cassiem, Ward 42 councillor, Bonita Jacobs, African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) Western Cape leader, Ferlon Christian, and Manenberg SAPS spokesperson, Captain Ian Bennett.
During her speech, Ms Jacobs said Manenberg needs a Godly revival, and to rebuild morals.
“Only the people of Manenberg can change Manenberg. Your child is my child,” she said to roaring applause.
Mr Cassiem described religious institutions as an oasis for young people.
“Our children feel hungry, but they hunger after the wrong things. They think brand-named clothes and takkies will fill that hunger, but one can only find fulfilment and nourishment when you are serving God. Individually, God has chosen you as A-grade, just like the farmer would. He has chosen the MCMF to be the guiding lamp for the community,” Mr Cassiem added.
Mr Christian announced that he is from Bonteheuwel and the only thing that kept him away from social ills, was the relationship he has with God.
“I am proud of the pastors who are saying they want to make a difference. Jesus is still the answer today.
“We want to see safer communities and our children being able to walk in the street. I believe this fellowship will make a big difference in Manenberg. We are taking Manenberg back. It does not belong to gangsters and drug lords. We are not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ,” Mr Christian said.