Bishop Joshua Louw’s Column – Sept 2023

Then God said, “Let us make humans in our image, according to our likeness, and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over the cattle and over all the wild animals of the earth[b] and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.” 

 So, God created humans in his image, in the image of God he created them male and female; he created them. (Gen.1:26-27)

Dear Friends,
Greetings to you! 

On 1 September, I celebrated my 3rd anniversary as a bishop in the church of God. Thank you for your prayers and support as we navigated ministry during a very challenging time.

This month, the church celebrates several saints, including Robert Gray, the first bishop of our diocese; Cyprian, the bishop in North Africa; and Steve Bantu Biko, a martyr who fought for the liberation of all people in South Africa.

This month, our province celebrates the lives and ministries of all children and young people. It is also the start of our Season of Creation.

We are all made in God’s image and need to treat each other with the respect and dignity that we want to receive. We have to protect those whose dignity is being trampled upon.

In one of my previous articles, I mentioned that our ministry with our children and young people was worst affected during the COVID-19 pandemic. I then appealed to you to assist in restoring those ministries. It was important that everybody, especially the young, feel a sense of belonging in our congregation. I want to thank you because as I go around the diocese and speak to the clergy and young people, I sense that they are back and actively involved in the life of the church. Congratulations, and may we grow these ministries.

We had a wonderful diocesan YPM service on Sunday, 3 September, at St George’s, Silvertown and though it was cold and rainy, it did not keep our young people away from this annual Thanksgiving Service.  

 Thank you to all who attended, and we see you again next year! Thanks also to Jesse and the rest of the diocesan YPM council for the sterling work that they are doing in the diocese.

God is asking us to care for our creation. We are experiencing extraordinary weather conditions, and we are responsible for caring for our creation. Let us each play our part, as many of our communities have become dumping spaces. We can start with as little as caring for plants in our living areas and churches, helping clean our streets, and using environmentally friendly items.  

I am sure that your green team in your parish will be able to assist you in more practical ways.

Please pray for the appointment of Revd Miseka Mapukata as she has been appointed rector of the parish of Hout Bay. Her institution is on Sunday, 26 November 2023, at 3 pm.

Pray for Bishop Geoff and Kate Davies, who arrived safely on Tristan Da Cunha for the confirmation service of 8 candidates on Sunday, 24 September 2023.  We hold the rector,  

Reverend Margaret Van der Berg, her husband Manie, the island administrator, churchwardens and the people on the island in our prayers. 

Our sincere condolences to the Revd Anthony and Vanessa as they mourn the passing of Vanessa’s father, William Smith.

To Revd John and Jilly Freeth as they mourn the passing of their son, Timo.

As we move forward, may we hold each other in prayer as we face our daily challenges.

God bless!   

+Joshua, Table Bay 

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