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Vol 16 No 11


The official gazette of the Diocese of Port Elizabeth:
Church of the Province of Southern Africa

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 •  Celebrating their roots
 •  All Saints' celebrate 150 years
 •  AIDS shirt says it all

The editor and
Iindaba committee members
Bishop Bethlehem, Mazoe
and the diocesan staff
in wishing our readers
a very blessed Chrismastide,
and much joy,
love and peace
throughout the coming year.

Celebrating their roots
People wearing their traditional clothes arrived at St Matthias in Motherwell in large numbers on Sunday 25 September to celebrate Heritage Day, reports Sipho Tokota. 

It was a joyous occasion - traditional food was served and various traditions were demonstrated. Besides those shown in the photos, these included Mrs Plaatjie instructing the young girls on how to behave properly; an umtshakazi (newly wed) also showed how to fetch water, balancing the bucket on her head; and even the youth joined in with more traditions worth passing on.

The day was full of fun, and all felt that tradition does not fade - our roots are here to stay.

Singing their praises - Xhantiwomzi Maphaphu, one of the young Sunday School boys, demonstrated the skills needed by a Praise Singer.

Pics: 1) Look and learn - An umtshakazi (newly wed) shows how to dish up traditional food for the elderly. 2) Traditional wear - The rector, Sipho Tokota, and his wife Nozipho, take two of the youth members under their wings.

All Saints' celebrate 150 years
Sophy, the wife of Bishop Gray, designed many of the older church buildings in the southern areas of the CPSA. Fortunately All Saints’ in Somerset East is one that has survived as a place of worship for 150 years.

On Sunday 6 November some of the parishioners gathered for a braai at the Gill College canteen, which has a covered braai section. Much-needed rain poured down,  adding to the celebrations rather than dampening the spirits of those enjoying themselves. That evening  the 150th anniversary celebration service was held, during which two young pupils from Gill College were confirmed by Bishop Bethlehem. A testimony to God’s wonderful provision was given by Piet and Vanessa Coetzee, who had been praying earnestly for a car to replace their broken one. A few days later their rector, Dudley Greenshields, had knocked on their door and handed them keys to a car.

Over the last weekend of October, the Women’s Fellowship combined with the Somerset East Garden Club to host a successful Rose Show as part of the celebrations. Although the area is in the grip of a major drought, the Heritage roses showed their hardiness by putting on a magnificent display. There were also many talks and demonstrations during the Saturday.

The congregation thrived for many years but, as more families moved away from the Karoo, the numbers of worshippers dwindled, and in December 1992 All Saints’ became a United Church, bringing together Anglican, Methodist and Presbyterian worshippers.

Pics: 1) Oiling the cogs - As with most congregations, it is the faithfulness of the women who work tirelessly in the background that keeps the wheels turning. Two such women at All Saints’ United are Pru Cloete and Heather Lappan.  2) Doing what comes naturally - At braais in South Africa, the men cook and the women look! The rector, Dudley Greenshields, Piet Coetzee, Kevin McCaughey and Andries van Niekerk enjoyed the fire's warmth while braai-ing.  3) The house of worship - 150 on a beautiful rainy day.

AIDS shirt says it all
While listening to a conference speaker some time ago, Diana Nkesiga began doodling, and a powerful message came out of her drawing.

This drawing has now been used as a logo on the back of a T-shirt which is being sold in aid of the St Francis Hospice “Project for Bereaved Children”. The logo has two upside-down AIDS ribbons, turned into a man and a woman with uplifted arms, and the words “Together we can turn AIDS around”.

The message is a wake-up call to men, as well as women, that unless both sexes work together, the spread of AIDS will not be stopped. If everyone works together then AIDS can be turned around, and there will be a future for our young people.

The T-shirts cost only R40 each. Orders to Hospice 041 360 7070.

Diana will leave a big gap in the AIDS ministry within the diocese, especially among the youth, when she returns to Uganda as we go to press. She has also written some simple prayers for children who have been bereaved. Read about the little prayer book on page 4.

Pic: The shirt that says it all

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