SACC Statement on the Lagos Church Disaster

SOUTH AFRICAN COUNCIL OF CHURCHES STATEMENT

ON THE TRAGEDY OF THE LAGOS CHURCH DISASTER

September 18, 2014

The South African Council of Churches extends deep condolences to the families and friends of people that have lost their lives in the painful tragedy of the Lagos church disaster. We call upon all member churches and all people of goodwill to avail themselves to comfort and support distressed families, some of whom are having sleepless nights of anxiety not knowing the fate of their loved ones.

It is much to be regretted that it took such a long time for even the sketchy facts of what happened, were to emerge, says after the disaster!

However, we commend the efforts of the South African Government in working with the Government of Nigeria on this crisis and in supporting our families in distress. The conflicting messages on the exact numbers of the deceased are immaterial, whether we had lost seven of sixty seven people is not the point, our hearts go out for those souls and the families they leave behind. The national grief cannot be mitigated by the numbers. We appeal to faith communities across the country to use their worship time this weekend – in mosques, shuls/synagogues/temples, churches and all places of worship on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, to uphold this disaster and pray for its victims.

Much has been made of the fact that people go on frequent pilgrimage to Pastor TB Joshua’s Lagos Synagogue Church of All Nations; and we have been asked to comment on the nature of his ministry. We do not think it is appropriate in the present circumstances to be analysing or commenting one way or the other on the ministry of this church and its attraction to people from all over. We wish to focus our prayers and support to the families of those who have perished or injured at the site of disaster, and encourage rescue speedy efforts for any that may have survived the initial crash and in desperate need to be unearthed from the pockets of air under the rubble.

Bishop Malusi Mpumlwana

Acting General Secretary, SACC 076 041 7244

Presidential Succession Debate

KZN Church Leaders Meet To Discuss The Presidential Succession Debate

KWAZULU-NATAL CHURCH LEADERS had a fruitful meeting with over 150 church representatives from all parts of KwaZulu Natal on the 20th of November 2007.

The purpose of this seminar was to mobilise church leaders to reflect on the current developments of the “Presidential succession race” as well as to develop a theological vision around leadership.

The panellists participating in this seminar included Bishop Lunga Ka Siboto, an Executive Member of South African Council of Churches, Bishop Rubin Phillip, the Chair-person of KZNCC. Christian leaders of other political parties as Rev. H. Mbatha, Rev S. Khumalo and Rev Z. Jiyane participated in the discussions.

Among the main speakers were speakers as:

Reverend Gugu Shelembe, Chair-person of Thukela-Mzinyathi Regional Christian Council chaired the seminar where Professor T. Maluleke’s paper was read before presentations by Ms. Samkelisiwe Mthethwa who spoke on grassroots understanding of the presidential race, Bishop R. Phillip spoke on the KZN context and the succession race, and Bishop T. Madlala, Chairperson of KRCC spoke on churches’ understanding of what is happening.

Some of the issues emerging from the debate about “the leader we want” include that we want to have:

  • A leader that will make democracy work for all people in spite of their status.
  • A leader with integrity, who will allow debates, with good morals and ethics, who is not self-centred, who can take blame without pushing it to someone else, a leader with value.
  • A leader that can rise above the party-political arena.
  • A leader that can unite South Africans.
  • A leader that will strengthen democracy.
  • A leader that will up lift the poor and those who are suffering.
  • A leader who cares for people and is chosen by them.
  • A leader, people – especially the poor can identify with.
  • A leader that will adhere to the Freedom Charter.
  • A leader who will take South Africans to the global context.
  • A leader who may not have all the above mentions qualities but who is prepared to develop them.
  • A leader who can change our poverty to prosperity
  • A leader who is transparent, accountable and morally upright

Some of the challenges facing the church and to be faced by the church include the following:

  • The church has to be clear about a clear agenda to drive in relation to transformation of people’s lives.
  • The church itself must open up to issues and questions of good governance and good leadership.
  • The church must widen discussions on morality, ethics and value systems.
  • The church has to be more visible, and should be forthright in its prophetic and pastoral functions.
    • The church has to pray for the government.
    • The church is not the enemy for the government.
  • The church leadership has to speak out to the government authorities about good governance and good leadership.
  • The church should minister to leaders, regardless of their political affiliation and religious orientation.

Church leaders called upon all South Africans to exercise caution and maturity when making public statements regarding the succession debate to ensure that their participation in the debate is not divisive and destructive.

They also called on all churches to set aside some time these coming weeks to offer special prayers on behalf of our country, our government and our leaders, for God’s special undertaking on the presidential succession debate and processes before, during and after the Polokwane ANC conference.

The outcome of this “Succession Debate Seminar from the Perspective of the Churches” was that churches started engaging on this debate, prayed for peace, stability, guidance and smooth processes, had an opportunity to listen to the voices from communities and church leadership as well as from Christians leading other political parties. KZNCC is facilitating continued discussions and debate at local level in Ladysmith, Eshowe, Durban, Edendale, Portshepstone and Amanzimtoti. In these gatherings, a pastoral letter containing a theological vision around “the leadership we want” will be distributed for discussion.

For more information contact

Bishop Rubin Phillip : (031) 3092066 Phumzile Zondi-Mabizela (033-3454819)

LAUNCH OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY ELECTION MISSION 2016: KZN

 

01 July 2016, Diakonia Council of Churches, Durban

We, the organisations of civil society, faith based organisations, social movements and affiliated members to the KZN Civil Society Coalition led by the Kwa-Zulu Natal Christian Council (KZNCC)  and Democratic Development Programme (DDP) announce the launch of the 2016 Local Government Election Observer Mission.

Our interventions will focus on the following areas:

1). Pre-election violence monitoring

2). Election observation

3). Mediation

We further recognize the importance of these elections and are committed to ensuring free and fair election in the province of KZN.

Endorsed by:

Community Law and Rural Development Centre (CLRD)

Democracy Development Programme (DDP)

Diakonia Council of Churches (DCofC)

Justice and Peace Marrianhill

Kwa-Zulu Regional Christian Council (KRCC)

Kwa-Zulu Natal Christian Council (KZNCC)

Kwa-Zulu Natal Civil Society Coalition (KZNCSOC)

KZN Community Based Organisations Coalition (COMBOCO)

Mennonite Central Committee (South Africa Office)

Midlands Christian Council (MCC)

Southern Kwa-Zulu Natal Christian Council (SKZNCC)

Tugela-Amajuba-Mzinyathi Christian Council (TAMCC)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

UNITED CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH OF SOUTHERN AFRICA

SOUTH AFRICA SYNOD


 

 

 

PRAYER FOR THE NATION AND MARKING THE START OF A CHURCHES CAMPAIGN FOR THE NATION TO UPHOLD VALUES FORMER PRESIDENT STOOD FOR (Concept Note)

 

Mandela Day Prayer

DATE: July 18, 2013 (THURSDAY) VENUE: Howick Mandela Capture Site/Museum


 

 

KwaZulu-Natal Christian Council


PO Box 6191,                                                                                         50 Langalibalele Street,

Pietermaritzburg, South-Africa

Westgate, 1734                                                                                      Ph: +27- (0) 33-3454819 – Fax +27- (0)

33 – 3949965;

E-mail: secretary@sasynod.org.zaEmail: ddziva @kzncc.org.za

PURPOSE OF MANDELA DAY PRAYER 18 JULY

South Africa finds itself today facing an uncertain future. The revered international icon and founder of the nation, former President Nelson Mandela is in his last days. His example of tolerance and respect for human dignity captured the attention of many far and wide.

His emphasis on freedom, justice and equality for all of humanity, made him an international role model and landed him the Nobel Peace Prize. Voluntarily relinquishing state power after only one term won him many friends. The virtue of compassion that he espoused, won him many hearts and minds.

And now the nation is on suspense as he is in his final moments of a great life lived in pursuit of justice. We pray that this suspense and anxiety is well managed without plunging the nation into uncertainty.

This is also at a time when the life affirming values, ethics, norms and principles that he stood for seem to have been totally forgotten by many, especially those in positions of leadership. The rampant corruption, spiraling bad governance, self-enrichment by government officials and the greed of multinational corporationsis serious cause for concern. The increasing economic gap between the rich and the poor, the widespread and increased violence and rape of women and children in our communities, is exploding the myth that we are indeed free.

Does this place South Africa at a crossroads? The challenge is how do we instill and priorities those values and principles which Mandela stood for, in this climate of gloom, uncertainty and restlessness?

It is against this background that we propose a Mandela Day prayer service on the occasion of his 95th birthday, as self-examination of our part as people of faith to remind ourselves to adopt those principles that he lived by and stood for, and pray for the nation to rediscover those values of the father of the nation.

INTENDED AUDIENCE

Church leaders, church members, interfaith community

Government officials

Foreign diplomats

Schools (public & private)

Business community

PROPOSED VENUE: HOWICK MANDELA CAPTURE SITE/MUSEUM PORPOSED DATES: JULY 18, 2013 PORPOSED TIME: 10:00AM-13:00

DRAFT PROGRAM – 18 JULY 2013 Focus on “prayer for the father of the nation”

MASTER OF CEREMONY – The Rev ThulaniNdlazi

TIME ITEM PERSON
09:00 Gathering and celebratory singing Amadodana
10:00 National Anthem Gathering
10:15 Interfaith Prayers for Justice, Equality, Compassion and Healing of the nation – Christian

African Traditional Religions

–  Hindu,

–  Islamic

–  Jewish

–  Bahai

Rev Ian Booth Ms Nomagugu Ngobese Advocate Ranjiv R Nirghin Saleem Banda Ms Paddy Meskin Sylvia Kaye
10:40 Special Prayer for Mandela and Family Dr Rev Simanga Kumalo
10:50 Update on Mandela Rep from Mandela Foundation
11:00 Gospel Hymn celebrating Mandela’s life Gospel
11:20 Cultural Dance Fusion Dance Group
11:35 Keynote Speaker on Justice, Equality, Compassion and Healing Ms Ela Gandhi
12:10 Response: Making Justice and freedom a Reality KZN Premier Dr Zweli Mkhize
12:45 Universal Prayer for Peace Youth read prayer
13:00 Symbolism – release of 95 balloons and lunch KZNCC, UCCSA, Government

 

Supported and organized in consultation with:

Methodist Church

Anglican Church

Roman Catholic Church

Lutheran Church

Diakonia Council of Churches

KwaZulu Regional Christian Council

Midlands Christian Council

Thukela-Amajuba-Mzinyathi Regional Christian Council

KZN office of the Premier

YMCA

African Enterprise

World Conference on Religions for Peace KZN Interfaith Religious Council.

 

KZNCC Prayers for Former President Nelson Mandela – First week of July. Some participants showing extreme emotional distress.

KZNCC Prayers for Former President Nelson Mandela – Second week of July (Rev Danny Chetty (right) Rev Simpiwe Manqokontsi (in black suit), Dr Douglas Dziva (in red shirt), Dr Lucas Ngoetjana (looking at the sculpture) and 30 participants from neighbouring congregations.

JOINT STATEMENT BY THE RELIGIOUS LEADERS OF KWAZULU-NATAL FOLLOWING A MEETING WITH PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT HELD AT THE _________________________ CITY HALL ON THE 09 JULY 2013________________________________

We, the leaders of different faiths based organisations, following a meeting with the leadership of the provincial government of KwaZulu-Natal led by the Premier Dr ZweliMkhize have decided to issue this statement with an aim of mobilizing the people of KwaZulu-Natal and leaders of all faiths to join hands and pray for our former President Nelson Mandela, for the family and for the nation.

Although we are aware of his critical condition, we pray that he is at peace, the family at peace and the whole nation at peace.The resilience throughout his stay in hospital once again demonstrates his perseverance in the face of adversity – a remarkable trait of Madiba’s extraordinary life.

We have fond memories as the people of KwaZulu-Natal of Tata Madiba as he exercised his first democratic vote in Inanda, here in our Province, and reported to the fallen fathers of our liberation that their people were free at last.

Before his long incarceration, he spent the last days of his freedom here in this Province. The Capture Site in Howick will forever stand as a monument in memory of a man whose commitment to the emancipation of his people mobilized all of humanity to rise up against a crime against humanity itself – apartheid.

Despite his critical condition, we stand up today to salute a man who strode with grace and elegance among the great statesmen of our time and commanded an exalted place for us people in the community of nations.

We respectfully bow our heads in honour of a leader who was among us in KwaZulu- Natal during the darkest days of political violence, and persuaded the people of this province to throw pangas, guns and knobkierries into the sea and find each other in peace as brothers and sisters despite conflicting political inclinations.

During his years as a leader after his long period of imprisonment Madiba became a shining beacon of hope for not only the downtrodden of the world, but also a living symbol of the triumph of the human spirit against adversity. Tata Madiba deservedly won the Nobel Peace Prize and went on to lead South Africa as the country’s first truly democratically-elected President with dignity, honesty and integrity.

The world will always cherish the spirit of forgiveness Madiba awakened when he assured his former persecutors that South Africa indeed belonged to all who live in it, and that everyone could be assured of their right to freedom and security within the borders of this beautiful land. As he grew in stature from prisoner number 466/64 to President of the Republic, he became a father figure for not only his immediate and extended family, but also for all South Africans and indeed the whole world. During the past few years the world has watched with growing concern and bated breath as our icon’s life has became increasingly frail and illness has taken its toll on this previously robust fighter.

It is for these reasons that as religious leaders, working with the provincial government of KwaZulu-Natal, we are putting together a series of prayers and activities in honour of Tata Nelson Mandela. The prayers will lead up to the main Mandela Prayer Service Day at the Mandela Capture Site in Howick on the 18th July at 10h00.

Importantly, the weekly prayers are aimed at celebrating his legacy and his values.In very trying times of affliction and threat of national moral fiber disintegration – where the values, ethics and principles are compromised – a call for prayer gives hope of healing and continued efforts for moral regeneration, RDP of the soul, reconciliation, peace, justice and a spirit of social cohesion.

  • Mandela stands for forgiveness and reconciliation. It is imperative to accept one another and seek to continue to be at peace with ourselves and the nation.
  • Mandela stands for reconciliation and peace for all;
  • Mandela stands for the rule of law;
  • Mandela stands for liberation of all people in South Africa black and white, men and women;
  • Mandela stands for human dignity, human freedom (speech, association, movement, expression and choice) and human development;
  • Mandela stands for transparency, accountability, integrity and respect among the peoples;

As religious institutions we are leading a call for provincial prayers inspired by the values and principles which former President Nelson Mandela has held up with integrity. We ask churches, temples, synagogues and mosques in KwaZulu Natal to:

  • pray for President Rolihlahla Nelson Mandela while cherishing and emulating the values and principles he so steadfastly and passionately stands for.
  • pray for and act in accordance to transparency, accountability principles and the rule of law as espoused by our wonderful constitution;
  • Pray for and act in ways that deepen democracy and freedom for all at all levels, structures and systems of our society;
    • Pray and act in ways that promote racial reconciliation and social cohesion;
  • Pray for and remind and urge each other to achieve the principles stipulated in the Freedom Charter.

We request your religious group to make special prayers each of the coming 4 weekends. For each of the coming 4 weekends could you please pray thanking God for the life of Mandela, especially the following values he stands for:

  • (1) Justice,
  • (2) reconciliation,
  • (3) Compassion and
  • (4) Healing.

We also ask that in each of the coming 4 weekends you spend 67 minutes reaching out to someone to exercise; week 1-justice, Week 2 -reconciliation, Week 3 -compassion and Week 4 -healing. Details of other activities will be announced through the media.

Finally, as religious leaders we commend the Presidency for keeping the nation well

informed about the condition of Tata Mandela.

Ends

Issued by Religious Leaders from the following religious organizations:-

  1. Anglican Church
  2. Lutheran Church
  3. Methodist Church
  4. Roman Catholic Church
  5. United Congregational Church of Southern Africa
  6. Diakonia Council of Churches
  7. KwaZulu Regional Christian Council
  8. Midlands Christian Council
  9. Thukela-Amajuba-Mzinyathi Regional Christian Council
  10. YMCA
  11. Presbyterian Church
  12. KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Government
  13. KwaZulu-Natal Inter-Religious Council
  14. KwaZulu-Natal Inter-Religious Youth Council 16. World Conference on Religions for Peace

Enquires- Bishop Mike Vorster -072 4773618 or Cardinal Wilfred Napier -083 6175213

KZNCC Prayers for Former President Nelson Mandela – third week of July

 

 

KZNCC FYayers for Former President Melson Mandela -third week of July

 

 

 

KZNCC Prayers for Former President Nelson Mandela -third week of July

 

KZNCC Prayers for Former President Nelson Mandela – third week of July

 

 

KZNCC Prayers for Former President Nelson Mandela – Fouth week of July. Rev Victus Mthembu leads the prayer service at the Mandela Capture site.

 

KZNCC Prayers for Former President Nelson Mandela – Fouth week of July. Rev Victus Mthembu leads the prayer service at the Mandela Capture site. Tapiwa Buckenham Dziva, Rev Gora and participants from KwaPata churches participate in the prayers.

 

KZNCC Prayers for Former President Nelson Mandela 18th of July- Mandela. KZNCC staff Dr Douglas Dziva, Jabu Sibeko, Bongi Khoza, Dr Lukas Ngoetjana, Sinqobile Ndlovu, Ms Gugu Zondi (from the KZN Premier’s Office), Rev Victus Simpiwe Mnqokontsi and Mr Sbu Duma(KZNCC youth desk) at the Mandela Capture site.

 

 

 

KZNCC Prayers for Former President Nelson Mandela 18th of July- Mandela. Dr Simanga Khumalo (member of KZNCC and lecture at the Universitu of KwaZulu Natal School of Theology) leading special prayers for former President Nelson Mandela, the family and the nation (see full prayer below),

WCRP UNIVERSAL PRAYER FOR PEACE

Read to the gathering by youth during the Dr Nelson mandela Day

18 July 2013

At the Mandela Capture Site in Howick, Pietermaritzburg.

In the name of Almighty God, The Most Gracious, The Most Kind

We, the people come in prayer to the Source of all Justice, Truth and Peace on behalf of our cities, our Nation, our World.

We ask you: Help us to accept the challenge of AIDS.

To protect the healthy and calm the fearful,

To give courage to those in pain,

To embrace the dying and comfort the bereaved,

To care for the orphans and support all those in need,

Unite us in your love and free us from fear.

Make us instruments of your Peace Where there is ignorant and superstition,

Let there be enlightment and knowledge,

Where there is prejudice and hatred,

Let there be acceptance and love Where there is fear and suspicion Let there be confidence and trust Where there is tyranny and oppression Let there be freedom and justice Where there is poverty and disease Let there be prosperity and health Where there is strife and discord Let there be harmony and peace

Our world is sustained by 3 things: Justice, Truth and Peace

May we by our thoughts, works and deeds hasten the time when wrong and violence shall cease

That there may be Justice in the land, Truth amongst all it’s people and Peace established throughout the earth

May Peace Prevail on Earth! Amen

KZNCC Prayers for Former President Nelson Mandela 18th of July- Mandela led by youth from KZNCC and Inanda Serminary

KZNCC Prayers for Former President Nelson Mandela 18th of July- Mandela. KZN Premier Hon Dr Zweli Mkhize addressing the 1500 congregation.

PRAYING FOR NELSON MANDELA AS A SITE OF STRUGGLE: To let go or not to let go of him

Special Prayer for Nelson Mandela on his 95th birthday

Dr Rev SimangaKumalo

Oh God of our forbearers, God of Nelson Mandela and all the peoples of Africa.

We come to you this morning to celebrate the 95th birthday of our father Nelson Mandela. We thank you that you have enabled him to reach this milestone age.

We thank you Lord that 95 years ago when you created him you chose that he be an African

In your wisdom you chose that he be born in Africa, in South Africa to be exact. On the rural hills and valleys of the Eastern Cape. We are mindful of the fact that he could have been born somewhere else in the world, may be North American, Europe, or any other continent. But you

decided that he be an African. As a result he gave dignity to the continent of Africa. However we are aware Lord that he is a much bigger gift than to be confined in this country. He is a gift to the continent and also to all the people of goodwill throughout the globe.

Lord at this moment we pray for Madiba’s family during this difficult time. We can imagine the kind of stress they are going through, trying to manage their affairs to hold the family together and uplift the legacy of this great figure. What a difficult call for these poor mortals. We know this is not an easy call. We pray for his daughter Makaziwe Mandela (the matriarch of the family) and his grandson Chief Mandla Mandela. As they seek to lead the family to prepare for the resting place of our father guide them. Help them to find that position of peace, reconciliation, forgiveness and common understanding. We pray that they may be able to walk together in this difficult journey and bring the family together.

God we thank you for GracaMachel, his wife and the mother of our nation. She has been a gift to our father and we are grateful for the way in which she has been holding vigil next to his sick bed for the past 4-5 weeks. She has done this with integrity and dignity. We appreciate the moments she has taken to inform us of Madiba’s condition. She has given us hope. Lord we also pray for mamaWinnie Mandela and her part of the family. Give her strength to play her part in guiding both the family and the nation during this difficult time.

Lord we have also heard from the news this morning that Madiba is making steady progress in his recovery, even though he remains in a critical condition. We welcome and celebrate that news. However we cannot help but wonder how long, how long will he hang in there? These are the difficult questions that we feel uncomfortable to ask. We wonder how long will he be holding up?

We wonder when the inevitable will happen as it will. We thank you Lord for religion, because it gives us answers to the difficult questions of life, existence and death. At this moment we would like to ask you to help the religious leaders of this nation to help the nation as it deals with these questions that are difficult to answer. May our religious leaders not shy away from these questions by giving us easy answers that are devoid of the truth? May they shepherd the nation to face reality, no matter how difficult it may be.

Religion has taught us that death is not the end of life, but rather the beginning of new life in another realm. Both Christianity and our African religion have taught us about the afterlife, which enables one to exist without being limited by space and time. We drink from these wells, with the hope that when our father exits this world he will in another life, through which he will be with us in another form and continue to guide our nation to its destiny, where all our dreams as a nation and a people will become a reality. The dreams that all may have life in its fullness, where the frontiers of poverty, oppression, corruption and lack of democracy will be pushed.Where freedom and human dignity shall reign.

We are comforted by knowing that he will not be alone in that realm of our ancestors. He will join that great crowd of the pioneers and ancestors of Pan Africanism e.g. Kwameh Nkrumah, Julius Nyerere, SamoraMachel, PixleykaIsakaSeme, Marcus Garvey, Charlotte Maxeke, King Sobhuza 11, King Moshoeshoe, Queen Modjadji, SeretseKhama, and John LangalibaleleDube. Therefore it is with tears of joy and victory that we come to pray this morning, shouting at the top of our voices saying:

God Bless Nelson Mandela

God Bless Africa NkosiSikeleli Africa May the people of God Say: AMEN.

Prayer is by Dr R SimangalisoKumalo, 18 July 2013, Mandela Capture Site Howick Pietermaritzburg, South Africa

REFLECTIONS ON HIS PRAYER FOR FORMER PRESIDENT NELSON MANDELA, HIS FAMILY AND FOR THE NATION

Introduction

I have just arrived in my office from taking part in a big Mandela Prayer meeting at the Mandela capture site in Howick Pietermaritzburg. We had close to a thousand people. The event has been organized by the Premier’s Office, the KwaZulu-Natal Christian Council and other community organizations. It is not surprising that we had the premier, and other provincial leaders. I had been requested to do a special prayer for Madiba who is still in hospital and for his family. What huge and an intimidating responsibility. What does one say when praying for Mandela, such a great figure in our land or even on earth? The prayers that have been offered for him in the past months by the nation are that he must get well and go back home. Very few people have been brave enough to pray for him to go and rest in the bosom of his forbearers or God depending on one’s religious orientation. There are a few reasons for this and I would like to share those with you.

Cultural reasons

In African culture (southern Africa) you don’t pray for death to come, but rather you pray for healing. I have been amazed at the way people have been praying for Mandela. They have been offering very mixed prayers. Some pray for him to get better and go home. They even mention that they want him to leave many more years. Is that realistic? This sounds selfish to me. Of course it would be good for our Madiba to live long with us, but then he must be in good health and be able to enjoy life and the fruits of his labour. Must he continue to live even when he is not able to enjoy life because of his serious health condition? Is that what we want and is that what he would like? In some African cultures e.g. Zulu and Swazi, when an old person becomes maternally sick and does not get better, the family perform rituals to ask the ancestors and God to realise him/her, so that he/she may die peacefully and live a better and healthier life in the afterlife. But because we have forgotten our culture, this has not been raised as an option, I do not know, the family might have discussed this, of course this is private family business. The good news in African culture is that even if he goes, death does not mean the end of a person, but rather they join the world of the ancestors so that they are able to continuing looking after the living and influence their affairs. He joins another realm of existence, which makes him more omnipresent.

Christian perspective

Christians in this part of the world pray for healing and this context healing is understood in a narrow sense which is recovery from sickness, nothing else. This is because prayer is understood to be an act of protest against everything that denies life and promotes death. It is built on the understanding that God is for life, not for death and God is all powerful and can
heal at all diseases at all times. To pray for death is like giving up on the power of God to heal and cure. So even when it is obvious that life is no longer meaningful for a sick person people do not have the courage to pray for death as solution to sickness and pain. This is despite the fact that the Christian faith also teaches us about life after death-resurrection. When we are confronted with death, we turn to forget the importance of the theology of resurrection. We remember this theology once the person has died and we have to preach the funeral sermon or to officiate in the committal of the body to God. I do think that there is a need for a theology of life and death to be developed and taught to our people. This theology must remind us that death itself is inevitable and is another form of life in another realm, just as African culture teaches us.

Political perspective

I have also been hearing political prayers, which call for Mandela’s recovery because we need him and we cannot go forward without him as a nation and country. The government and political leaders have also organized prayer meetings, calling for religious leaders to come and lead these prayers. Such prayers are motivated by the thinking that peace, stability and reconciliation in South Africa depend on Mandela’s presence and existence. A number of people believe that if Mandela goes there is a lot that will go wrong politically. Therefore they are holding on him not to go. To pray for him to go is also a dangerous thing to do for people will misinterpret one’s prayer just to score political points. Therefore it is difficult to know what to do in this situation.

I hope that religious leaders may gather the courage to pray that the nation and the family can be able to release Mandela for as our African religion has taught us if he lives he is with us in a limited sense, confined by space, time and health conditions but if he goes he will be with us in a much more powerful way as an ancestor, who is not confined by these things. This was my prayer at the Mandela capture site. I can still say to pray for Mandela is indeed a site of struggle, do we let him go or we hold him back.

PMB 2012 December Tragedy

DEATH OF SEVEN PEOPLE IN THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS FOR KZN TRAFFIC POLICE

KwaZulu-Natal Christian Council (KZNCC) is disturbed by the deaths of seven people on Thursday and Friday 27 and 28 December 2012 in Pietermaritzburg. We extend our heartfelt condolences and prayers to the families of those who have lost love ones. We affirm the swift action taken by the MEC for Transport, Community Safety Willis Mchunu to suspend all recruitment,

KZNCC calls upon the Premier of KwaZulu-Natal, Dr Zweli Mkhize and MEC for Transport, Community Safety Willis Mchunu in addition to a Police investigation, to set up an Independent Commission of Enquiry to:

  • Establish the cause of the deaths
    • Review the recruitment process (How can 34000 people be short listed for 90 trainee

posts?)

Establish how well trained the recruitment officers and fitness instructors are for this

task?

Lack of basic first aid and water facilities.

Find appropriated ways to support the affected families while the investigations are

going on.

We request that this proposed Independent Commission of Enquiry include members of the Religious community.

We weep with those who weep at this time.

Yours faithfully

Bishop Mike Vorster

Chairperson: KwaZulu Natal Christian Council (KZNCC).

KZN CC Land Summit 19/10/2012

FRIDAY, 19 OCTOBER 2012

SOUTHERN AFRICAN CIVIL SOCIETY GROUPS HOST A SUCCESSFUL SUMMIT ON LAND ISSUES

The summit convened under the theme: “Land Policies, Human Rights, Development and Civil Society Action”.

The KwaZulu-Natal Christian Council (KZNCC) and the Southern African Catholic Bishops Conference (SACBC) in conjunction with the Thukela-Amajuba-Mzinyathi Christian Council (TAMCC), KwaZulu Regional Christian Council (KRCC) Southern KwaZulu- Natal Christian Council (SKZNCC) and Midlands Christian Council (MCC), hosted its 4th annual summit on Land Issues in Southern Africa (SADC).

Among the key partners and stakeholders of the hosting organization present at the summit, was the Rural Women’s Movement (RWM), Association for Rural Advancement (AFRA), The Landless People’s Movement (LPM), farmers and the University of KwaZulu- Natal (UKZN).

The summit was held in Durban and was officially opened by hosting organization CEO Dr Douglas Dziva on Thursday, 18 October 2012 and ended on a very high note on Friday, 19 October 2012, with key resolutions that are aimed at crafting an impactful and effective way forward for these organizations.

This 4th annual South African-led land summit had attracted close to a 100 delegates representing NGOs, social movements and faith based organizations in other Southern African countries such as Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Botswana.

Among the major concerns raised by the group and intensively deliberated upon during heated discussions was land dispossession, skewed land ownership, environmental degradation, the slow pace of land reform, inadequate political will, slow change of the status quo relating to women and land ownership, evection of people from their land and invasion of farms; as well as the abuse of farm workers and killing of farmers.

The delegates called for intensified efforts and interventions from government, business and religious leaders on land issues.

Among the key resolutions adopted by the summit was the intensified effort towards regional mobilization of grass roots people-raising awareness and supporting them in lobbying and advocacy for social justice relating to land in Southern African countries and the immediate creation of strategic networks and partnerships in specific countries within the region focusing on social justice, environmental justice and economic transformation which will be geared to assist the efforts of the group towards social transformation.

Strategic and effective structures and communication systems will be put in place in order to accelerate and advance the pace with which the identified concerns are addressed.

ENDS

Issued by

The KwaZulu-Natal Christian Council On behalf of the Land Summit

Legislature Sitting Programme 28 November 6 December 2013

LEGISLATURE SITTING PROGRAMME- as at noted by the Whips Forum –

Wednesday , 27 November 2013

for enquiries:

Sindi Tembe

Tel. 033 – 355 7659

Mobile: 082 802 6841

e-mail: tembes(cp kznleqislature.gov.za

DECEMBER 2013

Friday, 6 December 2013

08h00 to 09h00 – Party caucuses

09h00 to 09h45 – Briefing by SABC Executive on recent

developments at SABC and 2014’s National Elections Strategy [presentation and discussion]

FORMAL SITTING COMMENCES AT 09H45

09h45to 10h00 – Preliminaries (15 mins) [Optional]

10hOO to 10h05 – Report by the Chairperson of Standing Committee on Public Accounts

on the KZN Authorization of Unauthorized Expenditure Bill, 2013 (5 mins)

10h05 to 10h23 – Debate on the KZN Authorization of Unauthorized Expenditure Bill,

2013 (18 mins)

10h23 to 10h28 – Response by the MEC for Finance to debates (5 mins)

10h28 to 11h28 – Debate on the Consolidated Statements on Municipalities’ Budget –

4,h quarter (60 mins)

11 h28 to 11 h43 – Response by the MEC for Finance to debate (15 mins)
11 h43 to 11 h48 – Report by the Chairperson of Economic Development and Tourism on

the KZN Ithala Development Finance Corporation Bill, 2013 (5 mins)

11 h48 to 12h06 – Debate on the Bill (18 mins)

12h06 to 12h 11 – Response by the MEC for Economic Development and Tourism

(5 mins)

12h 11 to 12h21 – Report by the Chairperson of Finance on Adjustments Appropriation

Bill 2013/2014 (10 mins)

12h21 to 13h21 – Debate on the Adjustments Appropriation Bill (60 mins)

13h21 to 14h00 – LUNCH

14h00 to 14h 15 – Response by MEC for Finance on the Adjustments Appropriation

Bill 2013/2014 (15 mins)

14h 15 14h30 – Voting on the Adjustments Appropriation Bill 2013/2014 (15 mins)

14h30to 14h48 – Party Festive Messages (18 mins)

ACDP – 3 mins COPE – 3 mins MF – 3 mins DA – 3 mins IFP – 3 mins ANC – 3 mins

/4/745 – END OF PROCE

African Governments Colluding With Land Grabbers

African governments colluding with land-grabbers at the expense of the poor

Scores of Church related Organisations operating in SADC region have criticised the African governments for betraying people by allowing massive land grabbing by foreign multi-national companies. Church leaders and activists from six SADC countries (Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana, DRC, South Africa and Angola) who met in Durban from 16 to 18 October singled out national elites and African governments as the major actors in land- grabbing. They felt that lax laws were allowing the rich foreign corporates to displace the poor to pave way for mining, game reserves, golf estates and agricultural activities in pursuit of their own profits. The Durban based Catholic Cardinal Wilfred Napier, who was part of the workshop lamented that the poor people seem to have lost importance in eyes of their governments and the corporates. He said they only gain prominence during election times and are conveniently forgotten immediately thereafter.

One of the common issues which continued to emerge from presentations of participating countries is the governments’ slow pace or reluctance to protect people’s land rights. Most countries experience cases where ordinary people were given short to long term land leases that are subject to cancellations. While in other circles Zimbabwe has been commended for giving land to the poor through its fast track programme, the question of land tenure security is still contentious.

The 30 participants shared experiences showing that tenure systems in all Southern African countries are open to abuse and misuse by political elites, multi-corporates and traditional authorities. In Zambia local communities are being displaced to make way for mining activities, eg Solwezi district.

The participants strongly urged church leaders to redistribute church land and seek experts to offer advice on use of church land for food production and job creation. Bad governance and greed seem to have taken over in the distribution of God’s given natural resources. Speaking during the same land summit Methodist Bishop and Chairperson of the KwaZulu-Natal Christian Council Mike Vorster

called upon the South African government to abandon the willing buyer and willing seller land policy. Bishop Vorster said the policy was trying to balance two contrasting interests of the white landowners and the landless black majority, a situation he described as unworkable. The Church organisations resolved to lobby African governments to depoliticise and de-commodify land. As they plan massive mass mobilisation and campaigns in the entire SADC region, the group appeals to African parliaments to come up with laws that protect land owners, promote land rights and to criminalise massive land grabbing.

For any further inquiries please contact us on the details provided below.

Bishop Mike Vorster

Chairman of KwaZulu Natal Christian Council

072 4773618/0837353003