The 2018 annual Assembly was held at the Maranatha Retreat and Conference Centre, Roodekrans, and will be recorded as a momentous and historic one in the life of The Baptist Union. It was attended by just over 350 delegates from 164 Full Member Churches and 23 Fellowships. There were also 42 BWD delegates present and a number of day visitors who had registered. A tremendous spirit of unity prevailed and the presence of the Lord was evident during the entire Assembly and especially through the ministry of the Word on ‘Woe am I if I preach not the Gospel’ at the various sessions. The Assembly adopted a new structure for the Baptist Union in terms of which the offices of the President and General Secretary become obsolete, as well as the annual election of a Vice President. The new National Ministry Leader will fulfil some of the functions of the current General Secretary and the President. The Regional Associations will change in function and now become formal Networks. Please pray for the Officers and Executive as they implement the new structure.
Rev Sibusiso Mkhwanazi (Esikhawini) was inducted as the new BUSA President and gave an inspiring address. Rev Greg Matthei (Athlone) was elected as the last Vice President and Mrs Patricia Leripa (Bochabela) was inducted as the new BWD President. Mrs Juliana Dreyer (Bellville South) was elected as the BWD Vice President. The morning plenary speakers were Revs Johannes Lata, Ivan Haylock, Piff Pereira and Mr Peter Tarantal (Operation Mobilisation). A special farewell appreciation service was held for the General Secretary and Naomi, who will officially end their tenure at the end of March 2019.
The 2019 Assembly will be held from 29 June-3 July, DV, in Cape Town and will form part of the Western Province Baptist Association’s centenary celebrations. The WPBA celebrates 100 years of God’s goodness during this year.
BTC: Prior to the Assembly, the General Secretary was privileged to minister at the Chapel service, where recognition was given to Mrs Cecelia Sefara, who had faithfully served as the receptionist for 25 years.
The BNA held their AGM at Waterkloof Baptist Church during September. 64 delegates representing 44 churches were in attendance and a new Statement of Faith was tabled and accepted in principle. The WPBA held the second of their special centenary celebrations in the Cape Town City Hall on 2 September. It was a centenary rally with over 1 000 folk in attendance. A number of church youth/children/young adult/singing groups participated in this high-powered praise event.
Church News: “Of the Ages, for All Ages”
A number of our churches held Vacational Bible Schools during the October school holidays and report record attendances. Praise God for the children/youth who received Christ as Lord and Saviour.
Congratulations to: Ds Johannes du Preez (Bonaero Park) on his 80th birthday. Condolences to: Leona Wood (EPBA Office Secretary) on the loss of her mom; Kennedy and Elizabeth Mulenga on the loss of her mom. Ill: Ken Clack (Lambert Road) has had a biopsy and is awaiting the results.
Special Prayer Request:
Please be much in prayer for the finances of the Baptist Union. Pray that the Lord will provide so that we can meet our commitments and end 2018 on a positive note.