Reaching unreached foreigners in Cape Town – a city bustling with people from all over the world – is the goal of a new OM ministry development called Diaspora Hope.
Diaspora Hope team leader, Marcus Spronk outlined the ministry vision to partners and visitors at OM Cape Town’s annual partnership afternoon on Sunday (March 25). He said they have a simple approach – friendship.
The team began with befriending vendors at the Green Street Market and now have their own stand at the Soko Market on Burg Street where they have regular Bible studies, discussions, prayer and discipling. They sell Bibles in various languages to the foreigners for R20 and also have a Christian library available for those wanting more resources.
The team shared testimonies, including one of a trader who got saved and is now running his own Bible study. and another of how a Muslim’s heart has gradually been softened by their friendship approach. ‘Friendship is a two way thing’ said one of the team members, David Holt. ‘Working in the Kingdom is so simple: it’s all about relationships, all about friendships.’
The Diaspora Hope team also recently began running an international student café on Friday nights at the Mowbray Baptist Church. They are welcoming all students, international and local, Christians and non-Christians.
The national director of OM, Pranesh Anandlal, also gave an update of where they feel God has been leading the South African arm of the global mission organisation that is involved in 110 nations. He emphasised God’s heart for missionary Africans. ‘Less than 3% of people in Europe are evangelical Christians’ he said. ‘God is sending Africans out.’
Furthermore he touched on the organisation’s vision: to disciple churches for the nations by assisting them in getting involved with their local ministries. They believe that by getting involved locally, they allow churches to partner with them to create long-term sustainability. They have various ministries which churches can partner. These include Diaspora Hope, Aids Hope, Young Hope and Sport Link ( youth sports outreach)..
An update on OM’s Logos Hope Ship ministry was also given. Currently, 40 to 50 people are still needed on the ship. ‘There’s a place for everyone, young and old’ said Pranesh.
Dave Babcock who has been involved with OM for 40 years and has lived through persecution, also shared some of his heart. He concluded with Psalm 77v 11 & 12
‘But then I recall all you have done, O Lord; I remember Your wonderful deeds of long ago. They are constantly in my thoughts. I cannot stop thinking about Your mighty works.’ There certainly is excitement about God’s favour in OM and what He longs to continue to do through people who are willing to go where He sends them.
The afternoon was brought to a close OM- style: people divided into small groups and lifted the ministry up to God before tucking into some refreshments and networking.