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Archbishop Installed as Prior of St John for South Africa

(Click on the dots at the bottom of each photo to see other photos. Move your cursor over the bottom of photos to see the descriptions of each photo. Photos by Julian Goldswain.)

[St John News Release] The Most Reverend Dr Thabo Makgoba, Archbishop of Cape Town was installed as Prior of the Order of St John in South Africa by His Royal Highness, Prince Richard Duke of Gloucester KG GCVO GCStJ at a ceremony held at Christ Church, Constantia in Cape Town earlier today.

At the same ceremony, Archbishop Makgoba was invested as a Knight of Justice of the Order, committing himself to the care of the sick and injured in line with the mottoes of the Order ‘For the Faith’ and ‘in service of humanity’ – Pro Fide and Pro Utilitate Hominum.

The ceremony incorporates hundreds of years of tradition, displaying the processional symbols of the Cross of the Order, the Sword and numerous colourful banners. Today’s ceremony had a distinctly South African flavour with volunteer St John Community Health Workers (typically known for taking health care services to young and old in communities such as Nyanga and Gugulethu) singing in praise of the new Prior.

Volunteer members of the local St John Brigade, known countrywide for their provision of emergency care services, played a pivotal role in the ceremony, leading processions and forming a Guard of Honour for the new Prior and his esteemed guests.

The Archbishop takes over the reins of the South African Priory from Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu who served as the head of the non-profit organisation from 2012 to 2017.


1. The Order of St John dates from the first Crusade in 1099 and is the only Order of Chivalry still performing the work for which it was originally founded – to alleviate the suffering of all mankind everywhere and to encourage its spiritual growth.

2. St John is a leading international supplier of first aid courses, first aid kits and community health care training. They are dedicated to improving the health, safety and quality of life of all South Africans through the provision of First Aid and Community Health training, Eye Care and various community projects.

3. Active in South Africa for over 130 years, St John offers a range of services including:

First Aid training

First Aid kits

Community Health training

Eye tests and the provision of spectacles

A national youth development programme (9 – 18 years)

A national volunteer programme (adult)

First Aid services at public and community events

Hospital transfers

4. During the 2016/17 financial year, St John trained 16 217 people in first aid.

5. There are currently 274 St John Community Health Volunteers working in local communities. They provided 100 779 nursing and home visits in the past year, treated more than 9 829 first aid cases and gave 146 health related talks and workshops to various community groups.

6. St John – South Africa operates 12 eye care clinics in major cities and towns around the country. Each clinic performs professional eye testing and dispenses spectacles to those underprivileged members of the community who are unable to afford commercial rates. Certain clinics offer free testing and spectacles to over 300 people annually (most notably the elderly and school children).

7. During the last financial year, St John Eye Care Clinics examined 21 911 patients, provided 11 814 pairs of spectacles and referred 1 161 patients to provincial hospitals for specialist treatment / surgery.

8. There are currently 1 334 uniformed adult Brigade volunteers, 496 youth members.


Excerpted from Wikipedia

The Order of St John, formally the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem (French: l’ordre très vénérable de l’Hôpital de Saint-Jean de Jérusalem) and also known as St John International, is a royal order of chivalry first constituted in 1888 by royal charter from Queen Victoria…

The order is found throughout the Commonwealth of Nations, Hong Kong, the Republic of Ireland, and the United States of America, with the worldwide mission “to prevent and relieve sickness and injury, and to act to enhance the health and well-being of people anywhere in the world.” The order’s approximately 25,000 members, known as confrères, are mostly of the Protestant faith, though those of other Christian denominations or other religions are accepted into the order…

The Order of St John is perhaps best known through its service organisations, including St John Ambulance and St John Eye Hospital Group, the memberships and work of which are not constricted by denomination or religion. It is a constituent member of the Alliance of the Orders of Saint John of Jerusalem. Its headquarters are in London and it is a registered charity under English law.

Zonnebloem College celebrates its 160th year

[By Rebecca Malambo, Diocese of Cape Town] On Friday, 9th March 2018, learners from the two primary schools (boys and girls), high school (Zonnebloem Nest) and staff of the Children’s Art Centre gathered at the Manor House on Zonnebloem Estate to celebrate the 160th anniversary of Zonnebloem.

The Revd Karl Groepe, representing the Anglican Church, opened in prayer and shared pearls of wisdom with the learners and teachers.

On 11th March 1858, a school opened its doors for the first time in the outhouses of the farm Protea, the home of the first Anglican bishop of Cape Town, Robert Gray. The school was a joint venture between Bishop Robert Gray and Sir George Grey (Governor of the Cape Colony) and was intended primarily but not exclusively to be a place where children (prince and princesses) of the Chiefs mostly from the border region of the Eastern Cape Colony could come and be educated and Christianised.

The school opened with 39 pupils, 36 boys and 3 girls but by the end of 1859, the numbers had grown and the Bishop was forced to seek new and larger premises for his school. About this time the farm, Zonnebloem (place of the sunflowers) situated on the slopes of Devil’s Peak just outside the City of Cape Town came onto the market and the Bishop and Governor pooled their resources and purchased the farm as the new home for the school. The school moved there in 1860.

The name of the farm, adopted as its emblem the sunflower and created the Latin motto ‘Et Fili Lucis Ambulate (Walk as children of the light).

A service of Thanksgiving took place on Saturday 10th March at St Mark’s District Six.


Anglicans Help To Build a Creation Care Movement In Southern Africa


[Green Anglicans] Twenty-eight Anglicans from eight countries attended the Creation Care and the Gospel Workshop in South Africa. The Conference was organized by Lausanne / WEA Creation Care Network and A Rocha ZA with Green Anglicans as one of the partner organizations.

The concept of Caring for God’s creation was affirmed at the 3rd Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization held in Cape Town (2010) by more than 4,200 Christian leaders. The congress stated:

“The earth is created, sustained and redeemed by Christ. We cannot claim to love God while abusing what belongs to Christ by right of creation, redemption, and inheritance… If Jesus is Lord of all the earth, we cannot separate our relationship to Christ from how we act in relation to the earth. For to proclaim the gospel that says ‘Jesus is Lord’ is to proclaim the gospel that includes the earth, since Christ’s Lordship is over all creation. Creation care is thus a gospel issue within the Lordship of Christ.”

The Lausanne/WEA Creation Care Conference (Southern Africa) is part of a global campaign to stimulate a creation care movement across countries of Southern Africa. The conference seeks to empower Christians to develop new and strengthen existing creation care partnerships and initiatives throughout Southern Africa.


• To explore the theme of creation care in the Bible.

• To equip, catalyze and facilitate Christian creation care movements in local contexts and to encourage existing initiatives within the region.

• To exchange stories of creation care in action, share resources and knowledge, and foster new and existing partnerships.

• To develop a strong and active regional network of creation care practitioners and advocates.

Twenty eight Anglicans from Anglican Church of Central Africa and Southern Africa attended the conference from Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Botswana, South Africa, Swaziland and Mozambique.


The conference looked first at the Word of God, with inspiring speakers looking at Creation Care in the Bible. The key note speaker was Rev Dave Bookless of Arocha who is from the Diocese of London – he shared on the Old Testament and Eschatology. Ruth Valerio also an Anglican works for Tearfund and shared on the life of Jesus. Bishop Chad and Rev Sam Sifelani from the Diocese of Harare, Zimbabwe shared on the call to Eco-justice.


Bruce Hewitson (Diocese of Cape Town and a South African rep for the IPCC) shared on climate change. Rev Peter Houston (Diocese of natal) challenged us on Water Justice. Seth from Arocha Ghana looked at environmental degradation.


Wonderful breakaway sessions were held on topics such as “forming partnerships (Rev Sifelani –Diocese of Harare), “Creating a Creation Care service” (Rev Rachel Mash ), “Energy “(Safcei), “Farming Gods way – conservation agriculture” ; “How to care for creation in a world dominated by economics”Seth Ken Appiah Kubi, “Eco-church “ Ruth Valerio.

Held in a beautiful part of Kwa-Zulu Natal in South Africa, there were opportunities to visit some of the wonderful conservation programs in the area – and to participate in tree planting and clean ups.

Evening worship was held next the river on the theme of “Sacred water” and under the trees on the theme of “Hope when the climate is changing” led by Rev Mpho Mohale (Diocese of Christ the King) and rev Zama Sigudla from Swaziland.

A wonderful cultural evening was held to celebrate the vibrancy of the cultures and languages of this part of Africa.

Action plans were then made which focused on tree planting, clean ups, campaigns on banning the plastic bag, soil erosion and conservation agriculture.

Evening services were held in creation on the themes of “Sacred water” and “Serving God in a changing climate”

A wonderful closing Eucharist was held by Canon Sumani of Malawi and Rev Rachel Mash of South Africa.

The Green Anglicans movement had the opportunity to stay for an extra half day to look at how to take the movement forward and to build partnerships with Tearfund in the region.








A Media Committee initiative
Edited by the Revd Loraine Tulleken

Welcome to our exciting news service.
We anticipate emailing a selection of stories about three times a month.

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SA Anglican bishops slam VAT increase

The Reverend Kay Goldsworthy becomes world’s first female Anglican Archbishop

Welby: Anglican Communion is in a better place than five years ago

Australian Churches seek compensation for sex-abused criminals

Living Water For a Thirsty World – Pastoral Letter from the Synod of Bishops


New Anglican Inter Faith Commission begins work in Cairo

Bishop Curry on The Episcopal Church’s need for world Anglicanism: “We need each other”


Stellenbosch University to honour Thabo Makgoba, Patrice Motsepe and Max du Preez

Archbishop Thabo responds to President Zuma’s resignation

UK parish helps Joburg Diocese buy Dutch Reformed Church for Matllosane centre

New bishop pays respects to king

Global response to Pope’s call to pray for South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo


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Living Water For a Thirsty World – Pastoral Letter from the Synod of Bishops

Living Water For a Thirsty World

Pastoral Letter from the Synod of Bishops

Anglican Church of Southern Africa (ACSA)

23rd February 2018

Dear People of God,

We greet you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

As Bishops of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa (ACSA), we met in Synod in Benoni from Monday 19th until Friday 23rd February 2018. The full bench of Bishops was present, as well as the Vicar General of the Diocese of Umzimvubu. We represent Anglicans from Mozambique, Angola, Namibia, St Helena, Swaziland, Lesotho and South Africa.

Our meeting started with an “Eco-Retreat”, and took place within a rhythm of prayer, worship and fellowship. During our time together we shared at a personal level and debated issues facing the church, local communities and our various countries. In the interests of the environment, we had our first “paperless” Synod of Bishops, in which documents were distributed electronically.

Our “Eco-Retreat” was on the theme of water – bearing in mind the water crisis facing the Western Cape and some other parts of Southern Africa. Water is life, and we need to respect and use it as a gift from God for all. It is also a powerful symbol of God’s gift of the Holy Spirit. Jesus said, “Those who drink of the water that I will give them will never be thirsty. The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life” (John 4:14).

The Synod of Bishops welcomed the resignation of Jacob Zuma and the election of Cyril Ramaphosa as President of South Africa. What happens in South Africa affects all the countries of ACSA. We are aware of a fresh spirit of freedom and hope in South Africa. We also welcome reports of progress and reconciliation in many of our countries.

We pledge our prayers, and those of our people, for all who are in positions of power and authority in our countries. In the name of God we urge them to lead with an attitude of humble service, remembering especially those who are weak, vulnerable and in need. We urge our governments to prepare national budgets that are pro-poor. We call for corruption to be exposed and justice to be done wherever there has been abuse of power or privilege.

We gave attention to a number of areas of mission and ministry.

  1. We discussed the process of preparing for Bishops to retire and how to plan smooth transitions to new Bishops. We believe that it is important to do this is a way that is orderly and best serves the life, ministry and mission of ACSA. We said farewell to Bishop Richard Fenwick of St Helena and Bishop Bethlehem Nopece of Port Elizabeth, who will retire before and next Synod of Bishops meeting.
  2. We rejoiced in the planned consecration and enthronement of Moses Thozamile Madywabe as Bishop of Khahlamba in the Eastern Cape on Saturday 24th February. Our love and prayers are with him, his family and the Diocese as this new ministry begins.
  3. We commended the Liturgical Committee for its work, especially in these areas:
  • The Anglican Prayer Book Revision Process – “Under African Skies”. We recognised that there is a great deal of work still to be done here, and commit ourselves to an ongoing process of liturgical revision for worship that is Anglican, contextual and open to the leading of the Holy Spirit. A Provincial Liturgical consultation is being planned, in which feedback will be received from Dioceses and new work will be identified.
  • Revised Collects for the three year cycle of Sunday readings have been completed, and are receiving positive responses.
  • We welcomed progress on a number of projects, including the de-consecration of a church; a Zulu hymnbook with music; and the blessing and use of holy oils.
  1. After receiving advice from our Canon lawyers, we agreed on the process required to transform Angola from a Missionary Diocese to a fully fledged Diocese of ACSA. We also considered the best way forward for establishing a Missionary Diocese in Niassa. In addition we began to consider an application for a Suffragan Bishop from the Diocese of Namibia.
  2. We were introduced to the work of the Anglican Communion Safe Church Commission, which gives “guidelines to enhance the safety of all persons especially children, young people and vulnerable adults, within the provinces of the Anglican Communion”. It includes a Charter for the safety of people within the churches of the Anglican Communion. We agreed that this will be a standing agenda item for Synod of Bishops. We are deeply concerned for those who have experienced abuse in the church and want to set things right.
  3. HOPE Africa led us in a Gender Sensitisation Workshop, where we heard the deeply disturbing story of a young woman who was a victim of abuse and human trafficking. We were challenged to think critically about our attitudes towards relationships between men and women, and patriarchy within the church and society. We acknowledge that the church has sometimes been complicit in failing to deal with abuse, and commit ourselves anew to intentional and scriptural prophetic, teaching and caring ministries in this regard.
  4. Rev Jeremy Jobling and Rev Dorcas Mabitsela presented the Alpha course to us – showing how it can be used to introduce people to God through food, talks about out faith and discussion groups. We were given a full set of resources for training and running Alpha courses. We did an experiential session on Prayer from Youth Alpha – and found that it was not that difficult to put ourselves into the shoes of teenagers! We look forward to encouraging the use of Alpha in our Dioceses.
  5. We were encouraged to hear of developments in ACSA’s response to the Anglican Communion’s International Season of Intentional Discipleship and Disciple-Making. Through Growing the Church (GtC) discipleship training teams are being equipped around the Province using the LEAD Programme – Leadership for Evangelism and Disciple-Making. These teams are starting to train disciple-makers in their Dioceses. We welcomed the work of the Anglican Communion’s Discipleship Group, under the banner of “Living and Sharing Jesus-Shaped Life”.
  6. We welcomed a progress report on planning and preparations for the next Anglicans Ablaze Conference: 3rd to 6th October 2018 at the City Hill Auditorium, Hillcrest, in the Diocese of Natal. The theme is “Living a Jesus-Shaped Life”. Registrations are open and all the information is available at . We noted that there is enormous excitement building up in many parts of the Province. This year we are hoping to have 3,000 people attending.
  7. We received an update on MyAnglican, the Church Management System which has been adopted by Provincial Synod. As all our Dioceses and churches register with MyAnglican and start to use it, we will find ourselves being able to keep records, communicate and plan more effectively. Archbishop Thabo encouraged us all to appoint “champions” who have IT skills, to take this work forward in our Dioceses.
  8. Dr Sandile Buthelezi of the South African National Aids Council (SANAC) addressed us on their response to the HIV/AIDS pandemic, Tuberculosis and Sexually Transmitted Infections. We were encouraged to hear that they plan to work closely with churches once again. It is clear to us that a lot of work still needs to be done in order to address these issues effectively in Southern Africa.
  9. We participated in a workshop on Sustainable Development led by a team of Anglican leaders from various parts of Africa. We were reminded of important financial, property, resource and personnel management systems that need to be in place to support the mission and ministry of the church. We heard about income generating projects in some Dioceses, and reflected on how we can be more effective in this area. We also learnt more about the Peer Mentoring Programme.
  10. We discussed the challenges that face us at the College of the Transfiguration (COTT), and need it to survive and thrive as a centre of training for future clergy. Each Diocese has been asked to give a regular monthly donation to COTT this year, over and above paying for any students they may have there. Looking to the future, we received the preliminary report of the Commission that has been established under the chairmanship of Prof Barney Pityana. It is clear that we will need to engage in innovative thinking and deep soul-searching about the future of theological education and ministerial formation in ACSA. We agreed to set aside significant time to do this next time we meet, with the help of a variety of experts in the field.
  11. The members of the Archbishop’s Commission on Human Sexuality introduced their work to us. We were assured of the commission’s commitment to engage with the whole church in a spirit of openness, without preconceived outcomes. We workshopped some of the issues together – following the commitment of Lambeth Conference Resolution 1.10 of 1998, to consult and listen to one another. The commission explained to us the process of consultation with Dioceses that they envisage.

During Lent we enter into a time of “self-emptying” following the example of Jesus – through a commitment to prayer, fasting and works of charity. As we die to self in this way we are enabled to share the suffering of others as well as the promise of new life in the resurrection of Jesus. Jesus said, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me, and let the one who believes in me drink. As the scripture has said: Out of the believer’s heart shall flow rivers of living water.” (John 7:37-38)

We wish you, individually and in your communities, a blessed Lent, Passiontide and Easter in fellowship with the God of life and love.

Bishops’ statement on the South African Budget

Statement on South African Budget

Synod of Bishops: 22nd February 2018

The Bishops of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa express their deep concern at the increase in Value-Added Tax in the South African government’s budget.

It is distressing to us that the ordinary citizens of South Africa are being called upon through increased VAT to fill the gaps in government finances which are partly a result of massive maladministration and corruption, especially in state-owned enterprises.

We urge the South African government, as we have urged all governments in our region, to develop budgets which help the poor, to expose corruption and ensure that those who perpetrate it, whether in the private or public sector, are brought to justice.

Synod says farewell to Bishops of Port Elizabeth and St Helena

The Bishop of Port Elizabeth, the Right Revd Bethlehem Nopece, sitting left, and the Bishop of St Helena, the Right Revd Richard Fenwick, attended their last meeting of the Synod of Bishops at its February session.

Archbishop Thabo Makgoba and the Dean of the Province, the Right Revd Stephen Diseko led the Synod in a farewell liturgy.

Five ACSA bishops join training course in Canterbury

Five recently-consecrated bishops of the Province joined nearly 30 other bishops from around the Communion for training at Canterbury Cathedral earlier in February.

During the training they also visited the Archbishop of Canterbury at Lambeth Palace, London, and the Anglican Communion Office in London.

See photographs of their visit and read their full report below.

(Click on the dots at the bottom of the photos to see other photos. Move your cursor below the dots to read the captions.)


Click here for News Update 21 January




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Click here for News Update 15 December



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