HomeUncategorizedAfrikaans church leaders begin dialogue with ANC

Afrikaans church leaders begin dialogue with ANC

 
lutuli house

Luthuli House where Afrikaans church leaders and the ANC met on Tuesday.

Members of the Inter-Church Council (ICC), representing three mainstream Afrikaans churches, held a historic first dialogue meeting with leaders of the African National Congress at the ANC’s Luthuli House headquarters in Johannesburg on Tuesday (August 4).

Previously the church leaders withdrew from an invitation to meet the ANC on June 9 because they felt the “moral collapse” of the government, including the way the ANC handled the Nkandla Report, made meaningful dialogue impossible. According to a report in today’s Grens.Pos Nr 23, the email newsletter of the Dutch Reformed Church in the Eastern Cape, another factor in the withdrawal from the meeting was the ICC delegation’s wish to meet the ANC not just as representatives of the Afrikaans community but as churches with a prophetic response to the government.

Foundation for more talks
Tuesday’s meeting was an open and honest discussion which laid a foundation for further meetings between the ruling party and the churches, reports Grens.Pos. Topics discussed included lack of social cohesion in SA, moral decay in the country, corruption in government, and harm done to the economy and white morale as a result of Black Economic Empowerment.

The ICC representatives at the meeting were Ds Cassie Aucamp and Prof Nico Vorster (GKSA), Drs Braam Hanekom and Johann Ernst (NGK), and Drs Wim Dreyer and Wouter van Wyk (NHKA). The ANC was represented by Gwede Mantashe, Jesse Duarte, Daryl Swanepoel, Alwyn Marx, Willie van der Schyff, Zizi Kodwa and Father Maphatsoe.

The full report in today’s Grens.Pos reads:

Gedurende April 2015 het die ANC ‘n uitnodiging aan verskillende organisasies uit die Afrikaanse gemeenskap gerig om met hulle in gesprek te tree, waaronder Afrikaanse kerke. Die Nederduitsch Hervormde Kerk van Afrika (NHKA) het saam met die Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk (NGK) en die Gereformeerde Kerke in Suid-Afrika (GKSA) besluit om nie individueel te reageer nie, maar eerder gesamentlik deur die Tussenkerklike Raad (TKR), wat gestalte gee aan die genoemde drie kerke se samewerking en bilaterale verbintenisse. Die TKR het die ANC se uitnodiging by wyse van ‘n ope brief van die hand gewys, veral as gevolg van die manier waarop die Nkandla-verslag gehanteer is. Dit was ook vir die TKR belangrik om nie as verteenwoordigers van die Afrikaanse burgerlike samelewing met die regerende party te praat nie, maar juis as kerke met ‘n profetiese roeping teenoor die owerheid.

Hierop het die ANC die TKR uitgenooi tot ‘n gesprek wat op Dinsdag 4 Augustus 2015 in die ANC-hoofkantoor, Luthulihuis in Johannesburg, plaasgevind het. Die TKR-afvaardiging is saamgestel uit ds Cassie Aucamp en prof Nico Vorster (GKSA), drr Braam Hanekom en Johann Ernst (NGK) en drr Wim Dreyer en Wouter van Wyk (NHKA). Die ANC is verteenwoordig deur mnr Gwede Mantashe, me Jesse Duarte, mnre Daryl Swanepoel, Alwyn Marx, Willie van der Schyff, Zizi Kodwa en vader Maphatsoe. Dit was ‘n historiese eerste ontmoeting wat die grondslag gelê het vir verdere gesprekke tussen die regerende party en die kerke.

Dit was ‘n oop en eerlike gesprek en die volgende sake is bespreek:

* Gebrekkige sosiale kohesie in SA.
* Morele verval in SA. Dit sluit gebrek aan dissipline, respek en werksetiek, asook verbrokkeling van families en ‘n losbandige seksuele moraal in.
* Korrupsie en gebrek aan integriteit op regeringsvlak.
Daar is verder gepraat oor die geskiedenis en verskillende perspektiewe wat op die geskiedenis bestaan, asook transformasie en SEB. Die kerke het hul begrip vir die noodsaak van transformasie uitgespreek, maar dit ook duidelik gestel dat daar tans wit kapasiteit is wat verlore gaan. Wit mense voel toenemend gemarginaliseer en ons meen dat dit ‘n verlies vir die land in sy geheel is.

Dit is egter ook duidelik gestel dat die kerke nie die belange van enige politieke party of slegs die belange van die “wit” gemeenskap op die hart wil dra nie, maar wel die belange van die breë Suid-Afrikaanse gemeenskap.

Daar is ook oor die pad vorentoe gepraat. ‘n Klein taakgroep is aangewys om verdere gesprekke te struktureer. Dit is duidelik dat daar nie kitsoplossings bestaan nie en dat een gesprek nie alles sal verander nie. Tog kan daar nie net kritiek uitgespreek word nie en moet daar ook self ‘n positiewe bydrae gelewer word. Die kerke het dit duidelik gestel dat ons veral ten opsigte van morele- en vaardigheidsontwikkeling sal wil saamwerk.

– Drr Braam Hanekom (NGK), Wouter van Wyk (NHKA) en ds Cassie Aucamp (GKSA)

 
 

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3 Comments

  1. Billy says:

    Great to see churches involved our interacting with government. Would be good to see more churches involved.

  2. Martin says:

    Isn’t the church supposed to say: “Thus says the Lord”? I don’t see any of that in the media report. As long as the church only want what is good for the wider South African community and not what the Lord says how to transform our community, they have not been a prophetic voice. It is time that every congregation and for that matter, every congregate starts proclaiming the Word of the Lord to the community and especially the government. Start writing letters proclaiming the Word of the Lord and timely and untimely speak it. Then the Lord will touch the hearts of those whom should change and change will come.

  3. Madelyn says:

    It really warms my heart to read this article. This is only the beginning. Baby steps first and then walking together. I praise the Lord that the church is standing up and is having a voice. God has BIG plans for our country and when I read what is happening here and all over SA, it is evident that God is for us, not against us as SA’cans. I am very thankful for what is happening here.