South African society and the Church in SA need healing from many sicknesses, Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng told the Soweto Ministers Fraternal (SMF) yesterday during his keynote speech on the Prophetic Voice of Healing in South Africa and Africa.
SMF which played a role in changing the course of SA’s political liberation and which now focuses on mobilising the Body of Christ and encouraging fellowship among Christian leaders, hosted the event in partnership with Vuka Africa Foundation (VAF).
VAF’s mandate to bring hope, restoration and healing to the people of Africa and the African diaspora was birthed in prayer after founder Apostle Linda Gobodo encountered the brokenness of fellow Africans during visits to a number of African countries.
Yesterday’s meeting at the UAFC Hope church in Dube Village, Soweto, flowed out of VAF’s “Healing of the Nation” campaign.
Speaker after speaker spoke of the state of the nation before Mogoeng delivered his keynote address.
Archbishop Gladstone Botwana set the tone of the day in his opening prayer when he said: “We are a broken nation, a sick nation, a nation in trouble, a Church in trouble. We are sorry and repent that we have succumbed to circumstances. Sometimes we have sacrificed the truth ourselves.
“We need healing in South Africa my Lord. We need healing in your Church. Raise some John the Baptists. Raise some Martin Luthers. Raise prophetic voices in South Africa that are not going to be consumed by the system of this world but voices that will be controlled from the control tower of Heaven.”
Giving a word of welcome, Apostle Mpendulo Dungulu spoke of the need for leaders to read the signs of the times. He said that a leader must be able to discern where the Church is in God’s agenda and how God defines the Church.
Ade Nomvete sang a song titled Heal Our Land that was penned by Apostle Gobodo. Gobodo spoke about VAF’s extensive work aimed at addressing the ills and challenges of Africa. She said that apartheid had left black South Africans a legacy of trauma and brokenness.
During a 2015 visit to all the provinces in South Africa to encourage people to participate in building the economy she heard many stories of hopelessness, unemployment and lack of resources. She cried out to the Lord about what she heard and God said: “I wanted you to see the emotional state of your nation. You are wounded. You are broken, you are hurting. You are disappointed and you are very angry. You need healing. You are wounded.”
Gobodo reminded the Church that in the apartheid era children were separated from their mothers and went into exile, and of traumatic acts done by ordinary black South African to each other.
“There are mothers whose son’s were necklaced. They never healed. They are living with that pain. People ran away to go to exile leaving their mothers and families. They came back, went to parliament, put on a suit but were broken and wounded. Broken people cannot build. All they know is to destroy. Churches are going to be healing centres. She said even President Ramaphosa spoke of South Africa’s need for healing when he spoke at mama Winnie Mandela’s funeral. The president said; “We are broken. We need healing.”
Introducing Mogoeng, Rev Victor Khumalo, spoke of the chief justice’s humility and servant leadership. He asked: “How can a man be a judge and an usher at your church.”
Mogoeng tackled many illnesses in SA society which he said need healing. He shared stories from when he was growing up and watching the effects of apartheid, how racism became so rooted in black people’s hearts and minds that a white man was seen as “baas” and their owner.
“There is a lot of damage out there! The rape that we see, 99.9% of the rape that happens is by men who were systematically dehumanised. They got sick. One of the strategies was to never respect the one whose colour looks like yours.
“As a nation, we are suffering from racism. We are suffering from ethnicity. We are suffering from tribalism. Mental damage! We suffer from poverty. There was no preparation, no deliberate and systematic plan to take us from apartheid and colonialism to freedom.
“We need to humble ourselves and pray about the exact nature of our sickness and disease and how to step out of it and turn from our wicked ways then God will hear us.”
Addressing present church leaders on the state of the Church Mogoeng said the Church in SA has many sicknesses that need healing. He told the fivefold leaders to repent.
He said that Ezekiel 34:3 speaks of pastors who feed themselves and become fat, and wear the best clothes while giving nothing to their flocks.
“People do not want to have anything to do with Christianity because of what we do or what we allow to happen. The way we take offering is not always right; there can be as many as five rounds of offerings taken. I can even come with a bottle and put my picture on the bottle of water and tell people that as you behold my face, as you drink this water with understanding and revelation, you will celebrate in the name of Jesus.
“It’s a lie. Jesus never commercialised the Gospel. Freely you have received; freely you give,” he said.
He said, “Having a booking fee as a pastor is wrong. Making demands of the type of hotel accommodation you want; what car they must hire for you to come is wrong.
“Why can’t you go with the attitude that if they give me something it’s fine; if they don’t give me something it’s fine. Freely I was given and freely I must give. Christ came on Earth to be an example to us. When did He ever charge?”
He also said: “People [attending churches] don’t tithe. How can you participate in healing the nation when you do not obey God?”
The Church also fell short in allowing sexual sin.
Calling for the Church to repent and seek God’s face, he said: “In our quiet times let us not be asking for blessings; let us not be asking for growth of the ministry. Let us fundamentally pursue holiness and the fear of God. The love for God and the love for people, whether they are Christians or not Christians. We must love our enemies.”
He led the congregation in the following prayer: “Healing has arrived. Father, we repent of our sin as the body of Christ. As the people of South Africa, we have sinned against you. My God, make us whiter than the snow. Forgive us God, Almighty God, for the sins we have committed knowingly and unknowingly.
“Lord have mercy on us all. We know that you are a merciful God. Release your grace on us. Lord forgive us so we can be instruments for health in Jesus’ name. Heal our land. Our land is sick of poverty. Our land is sick of racism. Our land is sick of tribalism, rape, murder, corruption, theft, xenophobia leaderlessness, tax evasion — our land is sick of the commercialisation of the Gospel. Lord heal our land. Have mercy on us Lord. Have mercy in Jesus’ name we have prayed. Amen.
“Father, let there be peace, unity, shared prosperity in South Africa and Africa in the name of Jesus. Release peace in South Africa. Release peace in Africa. Heal our land. Restore to us what the locust and the cankerworm have eaten. In the name of Jesus, no more downgrading. Upward we move!
“Release our David to us now in the name of Jesus. We need our David as an instrument for the healing of the nation. Announce our David. We need healing as led by our David. Do a new thing here today. Mark yet another beginning. Release our David in Jesus’ mighty name we have prayed.”
Mogoeng asked God to give the Church the master key and blueprint to move His vision forward.
He repeatedly emphasised the need for unity in the Church. The Church should stand up and be a united voice in dealing with attacks on the Christian faith. Only a united Church can bring about healing to the nation, he said.