Hundreds of people from around South Africa came together on Saturday, June 18 to Good News Christian Centre (GNCC) in King William’s Town to celebrate the inauguration of a 14 meter high steel cross and an electronic board which shines out scriptures day and night.
Balloons were flying in the warm winter’s sun and a flock of pigeons were released as a symbol of the freedom which comes from the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Acclaimed prophets shared their inspirational messages. The celebration was held alongside the church in a gigantic white marquee tent that could accommodate 2 000 people. There was a mighty worship team complete with a full choir and flag dancers all proclaiming the greatness of Jesus Christ.
Project Coordinator, Robbie Hift explained: “The Good News Christian Centre is ideally situated for this giant Cross because it is right next to the main highway which links KWT and Bhisho. So, in the next few years, thousands of motorists will drive past this giant cross. Just imagine the reality: nearly everyone has a problem, be it financial, health, family, work or with their relationships.
“So as you are driving along feeling depressed and discouraged and worried about your problems, suddenly you come across this giant Cross of Hope and an electronic signboard which says Be strong and of good courage. Do not be afraid or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.
“Or the next time you drive past, you read Call upon the Name of the Lord and be saved! And this will be hugely encouraging to a rainbow nation of unbelievers as well as those who have never heard the gospel as well as those of the Christian faith.”
The start of a vision
This successful event is the culmination of nearly a year of work by members of several churches in Port Alfred, East London, Jeffreys Bay and King William’s Town. In 2015 the elders and pastors of GNCC were hugely excited when they saw the Cross of Hope at Van Stadens which was completed in December 2013. They sent a delegation to Jeffreys Bay in August 2015 to investigate building their own Cross of Hope in King William’s Town.
“At that first meeting,” Hift said, “the leaders asked me to become project coordinator, but they explained they didn’t know where to start to build their Cross of Hope.”
Hift laughed as he remembered saying to them: “Neither did I know, but with our wonderful God, all things are possible. It’s so simple. All you do is to share your vision with everyone that you meet, that Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth and the Life. Just explain that you intend to build a giant Cross of Hope so that all of South Africa will become encouraged by the greatness of God. When you share vision, other people will readily catch your vision and suddenly whatever you need will become instantly available. That’s the greatness of our God. He says: ‘I will supply all your needs!’ ”
A woman of God, Mama Zana had already had this vision since 2008 and she was the principal behind this major project. Mama Zana has been an influential member of GNCC for over 20 years. Throughout the one year building process, she was a shining light to the team members. Almost every day she would send a WhatsApp scripture or message of hope to keep us all strong and united in this cause for Jesus.
Strategy in worship
In December 2015, JBay Academy, agreed to host a workshop in Jeffreys Bay for the rapidly growing team of cross builders. Pastors, elders, prophets all came together to work out a strategy of how to make this Cross become a reality.
Hift said: “What we did at the workshop was to come before God and just worship Jesus for a solid hour and a half. We literally stopped the bus, switched off our phones and just worshipped God out loud with the aid of Jesus Culture DVDs and the words of our songs on a giant screen. The result was that suddenly we had a united team of people all in love with Jesus and prepared to do whatever it would take to build a giant cross! I am so amazed when I see the reality of Psalm 22: God is enthroned in the praises of His people.
“From that strategic worship we drew the manpower necessary to motivate prayer warriors and admin staff, structural engineer, workers, fund raisers, media liaison etc etc.”
Proclaiming God’s Word
“Whilst we were worshipping, I suddenly had a vision for a giant electronic board which would shine day and night to proclaim God’s Holy Word to the nation. It took several months of research to find a company in Johannesburg who could be relied upon to build an affordable LED board and to give us the backup and support that we would need.
“A seasoned engineer agreed to secure the steel and to weld the Cross before galvanizing it and transporting it to King William’s Town. He also researched and organised really good solar lighting to illuminate the cross brightly at night.
“Pastor Noel Ngesi of GNCC took the huge responsibility of organizing the celebration event with some 20 guest speakers and welcoming the multitude of guests. His comment was, “I am very excited because I think this Cross will have a hugely positive effect in unifying the local church. A unified church can perform miracles for the good of the greater community. All praise to Jesus Christ”