Thursday, July 23, 2015

The Road to the Global Day of Prayer (July 2015)

The Road to the Global Day of Prayer
- Transformation in the Mother City of South Africa

  1. The coming Kingdom ushered in?
  2. 19th Century Origins of the Global Day of Prayer
  3. The spiritual cradle of the new South Africa
  4. A good mix of prayer and compassion
  5. Soweto impacts the country
  6.   Brutal repression breads spiritual renewal
7.   New Prayer initiatives
  1. Prayer influences on other religions and ideologies
9.   Taking back territory from the enemy
10.  Changed Gangsters in the transformation process
11.  On the brink of Civil War
12. New Challenges from Gangsterism and Islam
13.  Response of the Church and Missions
14.  Anarchy or transformation?
15.  Spiritual warfare around drug-related issues
16.  Peace Initiatives
17.  Anointed Ministries
      18. A Special Month of Prayer
19. The spiritual war heats up
      20. Transformation of the Mother City prepared
      21.            The Quest for a prayer watch
      22. Transformation takes shape

AE - Africa Enterprise
ACVV - Afrikaanse Christelike Vrouevereniging (Afrikaans Women’s Guild)
AEF - Africa Evangelical Fellowship
ANC - African National Congress
AWB – Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging
CAD – Coloured Affairs Department
CRC - Coloured Representative Council
CCM - Christian Concern for Muslims
CCFM - Cape Community FM (radio)
CSV - Christelike Studentevereniging
CPTA- Cape Professional Teachers Association
DEIC - Dutch East India Company
DRC - Dutch Reformed Church (NG Kerk)
Ds – Dominee (equivalent of Reverend)
DTS  - Disciple Training School
GCOWE  - Global Consultation for World Evangelization
ICU - Industrial and Commercial Workers Union of Africa
IFP  - Inkatha Freedom Party
LMS  - London Missionary Society
MECO - Middle East Christian Outreach
MERCSA Muslim Resource Centre of South Africa
MJC – Muslim Judicial Council
NEUF - Non European Unity Front
NEUM - Non-European Unity Movement
OM - Operation Mobilization
PAGAD  - People against Gangsterism and Drugs
PAC – Pan African Congress
PCR  - Programme to Combat Racism
SACC -South African Council of Churches
SAMS - South African Missionary Society
SIM - Society of International Ministries
SPG - Society for the Propagation of the Gospel
TEAM  - The Evangelical Alliance Mission.
TEASA  -The Evangelical Alliance of South Africa
TEPA - Teachers’ Educational and Professional Association
TLSA - Teachers’ League of South Africa
UDF - United Democratic Front
UNISA - University of South Africa
UCT - University of Cape Town
UWC  - University of the Western Cape
V.O.C - Vereenigde Oost Indische Compagne = United East India Company
WCC - World Council of Churches
WEC  -Worldwide Evangelization for Christ
YWAM  - Youth With a Mission
YMCA  -Young Men’s Christian Association
Z.A. Gesticht - Zuid-Afrikaanse Gesticht (South African Foundation)
We returned to South Africa as a family in 1992. Being a born and bred Capetonian, I had been in Germany and Holland since 1973, apart from a period of six months in 1980/81, during which I was teaching in the township Hanover Park. I had left in 1973 as an (in)voluntary exile because of the prohibition of my intended marriage to a German national according the laws of the country at the time.
The hope of getting accommodation near to the German school of Cape Town – our children could not speak English or Afrikaans – brought us close to Bo-Kaap, where I was born at the St Monica’s Maternity Home.  Soon after our arrival in Cape Town, we were challenged to get involved with the Muslim community and their religion. The resumption of studies in Missions and Islam ensued. 
Assignments done for the post-graduate course at the Bible Institute of South Africa in Kalk Bay gripped me, giving me a hunger to search further. The over-riding effect of the study on me was a significant sense of guilt towards the Cape Muslims, a people group which has been in this country so long. This humbled me but simultaneously it challenged me to share the information with the body of Christ. This led to writing a treatise, which I called The Cinderella of Missions.  
Access to the libraries of three universities and various Bible Schools – not even to mention the unique research library in the historical Company Gardens, plus the presence of a Jewish and an Islamic library - was an extra boon as I continued with my informal studies ever since. In turn, the research brought me to discover exciting spiritual dynamics. I was sometimes challenged, but more often blessed as I experienced and researched one of the most exciting periods in the history of the Mother City of South Africa.
          The material offered was initially prepared first and foremost to help Christians - especially Bible School Students - to reach out in love to Muslims and Jews. Few things would give me more satisfaction than if the Church of South Africa could start ‘settling’ the debt, which has been incurred and which is still being accumulated through lack of understanding and love for the Muslims. But then, any attempt at restitution should go the biblical way. The ‘repaying’ must go via the cross of Calvary! A spontaneous reaction out of guilt - without heart-felt remorse - is actually not good enough.
Although my wife and I have a love for the Jews which goes back many years, I only started looking seriously at the religion Judaism as such when I began researching the biblical personalities common to the Old Testament (Tenach), the Talmud and the Qur’an. I obviously discovered that there is much guilt of the church involved with regard to the Jews, like the arrogant and unbiblical claim that the church came in the place of Israel. (As Christians, we have been referring to the Hebrew Bible as the Old Testament, a term Jews consider denigrating.  I try to avoid the term because of the connotation that the New Testament more or less replaced it. For lack of a better term I nevertheless use it here and there. Jewish scholars sometime refer to the NT as Christian Scriptures, but that terminology does not sound to me accurate enough.)
However, my views should not be interpreted as glib criticism.  They should rather serve as an encouragement to take God’s Word seriously, to warn prophetically because biblical teachings are ignored by people across the board. South Africa has the sad heritage of a past where those in authority did not heed prophetic warnings. The church should not allow this to deter her from continuing to articulate clearly what the Bible teaches at a time when a false reconciliation, a syncretism of all religions - without repentance, confession and restitution - has become popular.
          Furthermore, I am quite aware that the publication of less known truths is apt to cause much trauma and pain when readers from the three Abrahamic religions and from different church backgrounds would discover that Satan has been hard at work to rob millions around the world of the liberation, which Jesus had won through his atoning death and resurrection. Therefore a triumphant attitude and arrogance cannot be accommodated. My intention is definitely not to hit at some churches, at the Muslims or at the Jews, but rather to create an atmosphere of humble compassion towards other religious groups, to help create a climate in which true reconciliation can flourish.

            On the periphery of our ministry as missionaries of Worldwide Evangelization for Christ (WEC) International, we have been involved with the prayer movement at the Cape since January 1992, such as prayer events at the Moravian Church of District Six. From close quarters we experienced special answers to prayer. I jotted down some of the things which we experienced down the years. In the course of my hobby – historical research – I also discovered how the Cape has impacted world history. 
          Born in Bo-Kaap in 1945 when it was not yet a Muslim stronghold, I was raised in District Six and Tiervlei (later the ‘Coloured’ section of this suburb was called Ravensmead). I spent my first nine years in the bubbling cosmopolitan slum area District Six when Christians, Muslims and Jews were still rubbing shoulders harmoniously, attending the Moravian Church and school there.
I am sure many Capetonians will be surprised to read how the citizens of those parts of our city - and others from the disadvantaged communities of the apartheid society - have been influencing the rest of the Cape Peninsula and even regions much further afield. In Tiervlei I attended the Volkskerk School, concluding my primary schooling on the Moravian mission station Elim.
In the material which I accumulated over the years, one manuscript after the other developed. Hardly any serious attempt towards publication occurred because I still found too many flaws at print-outs of documents.  I rather haphazardly started new research before finishing earlier manuscripts.  I am very much aware that the Mother City of South Africa has birthed negative legacies as well, but in this treatise I consciously choose to emphasise the positives. As I studied the history of Christian mission work at the Cape, it was an uncomfortable revelation to me to discern that there have been other forces at work which are not so obvious to the naked eye.

        I wish to express my heartfelt and special thanks to my wife for the encouragement to get material published at last.  The diagnosis of cancer in October 2003 was another nudge to get at least some of the material on my computer to other people.
            We got befriended to Leigh Telli, a gifted artist and her husband Paul in 2003. She is linked to the agency Messianic Testimony. With Paul being a Muslim background Arab Algerian, and her love for Jews, we saw the way paved for a new attempt at reconciliation between Jews and Muslims at the Cape under the banner of Jesus. At a seminar in February 2005 with this in mind, Kobus Smith of Timeline Press generously volunteered to re-publish the testimony booklets of Cape Muslims Search for Truth. This was the nudge to get THE ROAD TO THE GLOBAL DAY OF PRAYER, the present book, published instead. Neville Truter, a missionary colleague from SIM, volunteered to do lay-out for me when I mentioned the publication of a radio series that I was preparing for Cape Community FM in the run-up to the first Global Day of Prayer on 15 May 2005. Various delays in the actual publication brought me to consider adding an epilogue and appendices. A special word of thanks to Heidi Pasques and Claudia Taylor for editing and proof-reading various manuscripts the last few years.

        First and foremost however, I wish to give to God all the Glory for his enabling!! I pray that the reader will be blessed and challenged as I have been in the course of the research and the collating of the material.

Cape Town, July 2015.

At the end of the 30-year war in Europe between 1614 and 1648 religious intolerance was the order of the day. Every colonial power would thereafter enforce its own brand of Christianity on the countries they annexed. A view was prevalent at the time that the indigenous peoples of Africa and America were uncivilised, barbarian and wild. It was all the more surprising therefore that a persecuted Czech Bishop, Jan Amos Comenius, who had humanly speaking lost more than any normal person could bear, had a vision for the church which has become very apt for our day and age. Comenius, a bishop of the Old Unitas Fratrum, the Unity of the Brethren to which the Moravian Church owes its beginnings, suggested that the church should erect signs, which would usher in the coming Kingdom of our Lord. Bishop Comenius had the vision that nations from around the globe should start living harmoniously and peacefully under the reign of King Jesus. To that end the Gospel had to be spread to the ends of the world, using the ships that had started linking Europe with Asia, Africa and the New World.
          The transformation of the Mother City of South Africa is probably a special sign of God’s reign.
This booklet, an amended version of a radio series presented on Cape Community FM in April and May 2005, focuses on what has been happening over the last ten years here at the Cape, in answer to prayer. The bulk of the material has been taken from semi-academic unpublished manuscripts, Some Things wrought by Prayer and Spiritual Dynamics at the Cape. The sources and a Bibliography can be found in the latter (as yet unpublished) manuscript.

                            1.  The coming Kingdom ushered in?

          At the time when the persecuted and exiled Bishop Jan Amos Comenius spent his last years in England, Sweden and Holland, something happened at the Cape of Good Hope, which could have erected a special sign. Before the Haarlem shipwrecked on the rocks of Table Bay in 1647, the Dutch merely thought of starting a halfway post for their ships to provide food and fresh water. The hostile indigenous Khoikhoi stood as a mighty barrier in the way of such a venture.  After the shipwreck, the crew was forced to see indigenous people in a different light compared to the prevailing perception in Europe. In their memorandum to the East India Company in Amsterdam, Leendert Janssen and Nicolaas Proot, two stranded crew members, motivated the commencement of such a halfway station at the Cape with the need of bringing the Gospel to the indigenous Khoikhoi. These primal people had made a very favourable impression on them.
          The ship-wrecked Dutchmen were forced to stay here for five months, until another homeward bound ship was able to pick them up. It is special how the Remonstrantie, which was written by the stranded two men, contradicted the perception held of the indigenous people of their day and age. The Remonstrantie referred to ‘a popular error’: ‘Others will say that the natives are savages and cannibals, and that no good is to be expected from them.’ The Khoikhoi impressed the couple as possible candidates for ‘the magnifying of God’s Holy Name and to the propagation of the Gospel.’ The vision of Leendert Janssen and Nicolaas Proot thus somehow merged with that of Bishop Comenius. The Cape started to become a place of blessing to the nations. But it would take many centuries before this picture started to take shape. Wars, slavery and racial prejudice were to blur the picture of the harmonious living together of followers of Jesus. Sadly, the church at the Cape did not fulfil the role Comenius envisaged. Slaves were either rejected or barred from the two churches until 1800.
Georg Schmidt, the first South African missionary
One great exception to the behaviour of the Cape Colonists was the first missionary to South Africa, the prayerful German Georg Schmidt. Before coming to our shores, Schmidt had been imprisoned in the very same geographical region for his beliefs where Comenius had been persecuted. He was scoffed at by the colonists of the Cape for trying to reach out to the Wilden, the indigenous Khoikhoi, which they disparagingly called Hottentotten. Schmidt refused to be side-tracked through conversions among the colonists, preferring to go to those who had not heard the Gospel at all. He toiled hard amongst the resistant Khoi, initially without success. Only after five years the first of them came to the Lord, four men and to his own surprise also a dynamic woman. After receiving a written ordination from Count Zinzendorf in Germany, he baptised his first five converts in a river in 1742. Those baptised included the intelligent woman whom he gave the name Magdalena at her baptism.  In no time she learned to read Dutch.
          The Groote Kerk clergy applied so much pressure after Schmidt baptised Khoi that he felt compelled to leave for Europe.     Georg Schmidt hoped to get a Dutch Reformed ordination in Holland, which would have enabled him to return to the small flock he had to leave behind in the Overberg. But that was not to be.
        It has been reported that Schmidt continued to pray for his Khoi flock without a shepherd in Africa until old age in August 1785. Schmidt died before he could hear of the resumption of the missionary work in Baviaanskloof in 1792. At about the same time, one of his four male converts passed on peacefully here at the Cape.
Schmidt’s legacy of Prayer
The seed that Schmidt had sown at the Cape during his stint of not even seven years germinated, both in the Mother City and in Baviaanskloof, the later Genadendal. Schmidt was said to have been ‘a man of strong faith and a prayer warrior. Apparently this example rubbed off on at least one of his converts - Vehettge Tikkuie, who got the name Magdalena at her baptism. Khoi Christians reported that she was often found on her knees in prayer. On top of this she taught the believers from her New Testament, the portion of Scripture, which she had received from Georg Schmidt.
        Another one of the first converts was to be God’s special instrument, a catalyst to influence Church history significantly.  At the deathbed of this convert the new evangelical young minister of the Groote Kerk, Ds Van Lier, was deeply moved.  He saw how the Khoi believer died ‘in volkome rus en vrede van sy siel en in vertroue op die Here’, in complete rest and peace of his soul and in trust in the Lord.  Van Lier himself would be used to influence missionary history from Europe significantly, also encouraging the Moravians to send new missionaries. ‘De oude Lena’ (Magdalena) had the New Testament ready when three new Moravian missionaries arrived in 1792. When they came to the place where Georg Schmidt had baptised his five converts 50 years prior to their arrival, they found a loose Christian fellowship that had been held together by the prayerful Magdalena. The mission station, which was established there, was later called Genadendal. If one takes the finance minister of Ethiopia mentioned in Acts 8 as the absolute first indigenous evangelist, we can now say that our very own Magdalena was definitely the first one of Sub Saharan Africa. But she was also the first known indigenous female church planting evangelist of all time.
        Slaves felt unwelcome at the first two Cape churches until the Zuid-Afrikaanse Gesticht congregation in Long Street was established by the South African Missionary Society. The saying had gone around in slave circles that ‘de zwarte kerk is de slamse kerk’, implying that the mosque was the sanctuary for the slaves. Cape Christian colonists encouraged their slaves to become Muslims so that they could still be sold as cattle. By the end of the 18th century the pews at the back of the Groote Kerk - which had been reserved for slaves - were empty every Sunday. That was the period of Cape history when Islam blossomed in the Mother City of South Africa like never before or after.
Impact of prayer in Europe and America
In Europe there was a significant increase in missionary zeal at the end of the 18th century. The 24-hour prayer chain of the Moravians in Herrnhut that started in 1728, was definitely still going strong. In England evangelicalism was gaining ground. The effect of William Carey’s book, An enquiry into the obligations of Christians to use means for the conversion of the heathens (1792) was quite pervasive in Britain and North America. Intensive prayer preceded the revivals of 1792-1820, when no less than 12 mission agencies came into being. In London and Rotterdam two interdenominational missionary societies were founded in 1795 and 1797 respectively. Both of them had links to the Cape. The spiritual hunger of the Khoi at Genadendal, the new name of Baviaanskloof, has been attributed to the prayers of the Americans during the second great awakening there.  I suggest that the 24-hour prayer watch of the Moravians in Europe and America, plus the faithful prayer of Georg Schmidt until his death - along with those of his converts in Baviaanskloof - would have been even more contributory.
          It is interesting to note that the three Genadendal missionaries who arrived in 1792 - Christian Kühnel, Hendrik Marsveld and Daniel Schwinn - recorded the instance of a man who dreamt that three men would come to teach them. ‘They (the Khoi) say that they spoke about it often because they very much wished for it to happen’ In the diaries of these three missionaries one reads again and again of Khoi coming to them, desiring to know more, wanting to accept the Lord into their lives and wishing to be baptized. Evidently the Holy Spirit had prepared these people. On a daily basis the Genadendal missionaries were overwhelmed by questions such as ‘What must I do to be saved?’ It is striking that those who came to faith in Christ also sought protection against satanic forces.  The Holy Spirit, for example through dreams and visions, prepared the Khoi. However, the rational European missionaries were not ready for that. Thus the Moravian Johann P. Kohrhammer complained in 1799: ‘The Hottentots are great dreamers and we have much trouble to direct their minds from many deep-seated prejudices, that they have imbibed concerning the interpretation of dreams and visions.[1]
          But even if these missionaries had been trained along these lines, it would have been difficult to implement the teaching of biblical checks to see whether the dreams and visions were in accordance with Scripture. Only very few of the Khoisan could read the Bible in the early days of the Moravian ministry in Genadendal.

Supernatural Intervention
We have seen how Khoi were supernaturally called to Baviaanskloof after the arrival of the three Moravian missionaries in 1792. In the case of the other indigenous Cape people group, the San, called the Bosjesmannetjes, divine intervention was no less spectacular.  In order to reach the people described as ‘a race that stood at a lower stage socially and religiously than any other race upon the surface of the globe’ (Du Plessis, 1911:104), God initially used a devout colonist, Floris Visser, the excellent field-cornet. He was described by Du Plessis (1911:102), as ‘a man of character and piety, whose custom it was, even when journeying, to gather his companions and then to offer prayer and sing a psalm both morning and night.’
        Even the San people were deeply impressed by the devotion of Visser and his fellow Boers. Soon they expressed an earnest desire to get to know the God of the Dutchmen. Visser promised to assist them, suggesting that they go to Cape Town to present their request there for a teacher or missionary. Two ‘Bushmen’ and a Koranna two of whom had been given the rather derogatory Dutch names Oorlams and Slaparm, arrived in Cape Town at the very time when the first four missionaries of the LMS set foot on the shores of Table Bay (Du Plessis, 1911:102). This can be regarded as the pristine beginning of the significant work for which Robert Moffat was going to become known throughout the British Empire.    
        When the Church and the colonists at the Cape started becoming disinterested in reaching out in love to the slaves yet again, God intervened - surely because of the prayers of the faithful few elsewhere, probably evangelicals in England, in Germany and the USA.
        A strong British force comprising the 72nd and 83rd regiments garrisoned in the Cape. However, the soldiers John Kendrick and George Middlemiss couldn’t find a serious Christian among the 1,000 men.[2] At that stage Cape Town was given over to wickedness and immorality and nick-named as the ‘Paris of the South’. They were mocked for their seriousness as Middlemiss became Cape Methodism’s ‘first leader and exhorter-preacher’.
        God sometimes appears to supernaturally use natural disasters to shake people out of their indifference and lethargy. An earthquake on 4 December 1809 at the Cape caused not only an 8-day revival and a significant increase in evangelicals, but it also imparted a new urge towards missionary work among the slaves.
        During the earthquake, not a single person was killed, but the people fled in fear and watched horrified as the city was shaken as if by the fury of a giant hand. Kendrick wrote in 20 November 1810 that it was the greatest thing that could have happened as soldiers and civilians turned to God in prayer and pleaded for mercy. Many persons were led to think seriously about the salvation of their souls. A weekly prayer meeting was started every Saturday evening in addition to the monthly one, which continued for many years. The Methodist military officer Kendrick mentions revivals at Cape Town and at Wynberg at this time. By 1812 there were 142 men in the Methodist Society ‘all of whom experience the Love of God shed abroad in their.
        It is interesting that an earthquake had this effect. In the Islamic prophecies referring to the protection given by the ‘holy circle’ of shrines, earthquakes were mentioned by name.  The Cape was not supposed to be experiencing an earthquake!
        The 1809 earthquake impacted the SAMS in many ways. Jacobus Henricus Beck, a Cape colonist who had joined the SAMS, was deeply touched by the earthquake. Before long he was on his way to the Netherlands, Scotland and England for theological training. (Later he became the first pastor of the congregation formed at the ZA Gesticht.)
        Another Cape colonist who was impacted deeply by the earthquake was Martinus Casparus Petrus Vogelgezang. He was a teacher, who also went for missionary training. Later Vogelgezang became a powerful preacher and church planter at the Cape.

The Covenant of Blood River
Even though the Covenant of Blood River of 16 December 1838 took place in far away Natal, it had an impact on the rest of Southern Africa. Few historians discerned the spiritual roots at work, viz. that it was also a protest against the liberalism which had moved into the ranks of the church in the mid-19th century. Dr Andrew Murray was one of the great fighters in opposition. Ds G.W.A. van der Lingen of Paarl was one of very few indeed who withstood that tide. Ds van der Lingen was to be God’s instrument to usher in the 10 days of pre-Pentecost prayer meetings.

                                    2. 19th Century Origins of the Global Day of Prayer

The 1860 revival of Worcester that started in the church, where the well-known Dr Andrew Murray was the minister, has been described as a result of teamwork. It has been reported that his father, Ds Andrew Murray (sr), had prayed for revival every Friday evening since 1822. By 1860 he would thus have prayed for 38 years.  The gifted young dominee Andrew Murray, who had just come to Worcester prior to this, would be impacted during the revival along with thousands in the Western Cape. The younger Andrew Murray appears to have at least matched his father as a prayerful minister of the Word. About his life the secular Dictionary of South African Biography, Volume 1 (p.578) wrote: ‘The golden ray of prayer illumined all he did...He believed that nothing that was amiss and demanded correction could not be corrected or endured by prayer.’  This is confirmed when one takes a closer look at the titles of his 250 books. There one finds titles like De Kracht des Gebeds (1860), Pray without ceasing (1898) and The prayer life (1912). A letter was sent out to call for prayer.
Boland towns in the 1860 Revival
A significant contribution to the revival came from Montagu where three believers came together for early morning prayer on Sundays from the beginning of January 1860. Then there was the missionary conference in Worcester in April 1860 that can be regarded as the run-up to the revival. Three hundred and seventy preachers and laymen attended. The Presbyterian Dr James Adamson set the tone with a report at the conference of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in America, and the conditions for revival.  Ds Andrew Murray (sr.) was so overawed by the same topic that he burst into tears. And then there was a passionate prayer by his son and namesake that stirred the hearts of many, so much so that someone has suggested that this caused the beginning of the revival.
Montagu was the first place to experience revival under Rev James Cameron, a Methodist minister. People came from Worcester, Wellington and Paarl to observe and experience it. (Ds G.W. van der Lingen from Paarl was initially a little apprehensive). In May 1860 the revival started there with three prayer meetings per day. There was also great conviction of sin and confession.
            Ds G.W.A. van der Lingen of Paarl was one of very few indeed who withstood the tide of liberalism. It is no surprise that he became God’s instrument for ushering in the blessed Pinksterbidure, the tradition of prayer services between Ascension Day and Pentecost that became such a blessing to the Dutch Reformed Church over one and a half centuries. (This tradition is derived from Scripture where Jesus’ fearful disciples were united in prayer after the Ascension of our Lord.)

To the ends of the World
In front of the Groote Kerk there is a bust of the great Dr Andrew Murray, who possibly influenced the 20th century world prayer movement more than anybody else. As we have noted, his father, the Scottish Presbyterian Rev Andrew Murray, faithfully travailed in prayer for revival for 38 years. This was the example to Andrew Murray (jr), which brought him to teach quite forcefully on the Holy Spirit and ‘waiting on the Lord’. He put in practice what he had taught about ‘waiting on the Lord’ when he was invited to be a speaker at the World Missions conference in New York, 1900 - billed as the biggest ever to be held. (At this time the effect of the Enlightenment and rationalism had significantly diminished belief in unseen forces like the Holy Spirit.) Andrew Murray had no inner peace about going to New York, not even after the organizers tried to use his famous friend Dwight Moody to entice him. Moody invited Murray to join him in outreaches in the USA after the World Missions conference, but Murray was not to be swayed.  He felt morally bound to stay with his people because of the Anglo-Boer War (1899-1902). We may safely surmise that Murray was sensitive to the Holy Spirit, only wanting to take instructions from the Lord.
          Murray’s subsequent absence at the conference ironically became the biggest cause of missions in the 20th century.  After requesting and receiving the papers and discussions from the conference, Murray wrote down what he thought was lacking at the event in a booklet: The Key to the Missionary Problem. This book had an explosive influence on the churches in Europe, America and South Africa.  In the booklet Murray referred prominently to the 24-hour prayer watch of the Moravians. It called seriously for new devotion and intensive prayer for missions. Murray powerfully stated that missionary work is the primary task of the church, and that the pastor should have that as the main goal of his preaching. These sentiments were repeated in a small booklet he called Foreign Missions and the week of Prayer, January 5-12, 1902.  He furthermore suggested that ‘to join in united prayer for God’s Spirit to work in home churches a true interest in, and devotion to missions (is) our first and our most pressing need.
        One of Andrew Murray’s classic statements of the early 20th century was that ‘God is a God of missions.’ He wrote powerfully in his book The Kingdom of God in South Africa (1906): ‘Prayer is the life of missions. Continual, believing prayer is the secret of vitality and fruitfulness in missionary work. The God of missions is the God of prayer.
It is surely no mere co-incidence that revivals broke out in different parts of the world in the years hereafter - in such divergent countries as Wales, Norway, India and Chile.[3] (The effect of the Welsh revival on Korea and on Pentecostalism has been highlighted by Patrick Johnstone on a CD. Korea was fast becoming the second biggest missionary sending nation of the world in the 21st century.) Andrew Murray summarized the link between the Holy Spirit and missions as follows: ‘No one can expect to have the Holy Ghost unless he is prepared to be used for missions. Missions are the mission of the Holy Ghost.’ The first of the triennial General Missionary conferences was convened in 1904, very much prepared through prayer. These conferences surely contributed greatly in the run-up to the world event in Edinburgh in 1910. The Cape was used in this way by God to get missionary endeavour as a worldwide priority, an important spur to the conference at the Scottish Edinburgh in 1910, which in turn could be regarded as a forerunner of the World Council of Churches. (An interesting fact is that William Carey had proposed a hundred years earlier for a missions’ conference to be held at the Cape of Good Hope.)
At the end of the booklet The Key to the missionary Problem Andrew Murray advocated the observing of ‘Weeks of prayer for the World’. In an email Patrick Johnstone comments: ‘So far as I know this was not taken up earnestly until 1962 when Hans van Staden, the Founder and Director of the Dorothea Mission inspired the launching of a whole series of Weeks of Prayer for the World in both Southern Africa and Europe.’ It was these Weeks of Prayer that made the provision of prayer information so important, and led to van Staden’s challenge to Johnstone to write a booklet of information to help in these prayer weeks. Hans van Staden also proposed the name „Operation World“. In Johnstone’s own words: ‘So the book was South African-born, but then went global.’

A new wave of revival
During Pentecost 1904 the Methodists at Wittebergen, where Gottlob Schreiner[4] had once worked as a missionary, sponsored a week of prayer. There was such a response that intercessors met at 4 a.m. Prayer meetings continued throughout the day. A month later a great revival hit the Cape village of Villiersdorp.  This was part of a worldwide move of the Holy Spirit to which the booklet of Dr Andrew Murray, The Key to the Missionary Problem, had contributed significantly.
        Especially the news of the Welsh revival in 1904 caused the NGK commission to issue a call for all churches to join together to pray for South Africa. Dr Andrew Murray, together with Prof. N. J. Hofmeyr and Ds Botha, organized a conference on revival for ministers at the Stellenbosch Seminary in May 1905. The main topic was the ministry of the Holy Spirit in the world and in the church. Soon local awakenings were taking place all over the Cape Province, in both Afrikaans and English-speaking churches.

Two Boland towns get revival prominence
On the evening of 23 July 1905 about 130 young people were engaged in a Christian Endeavour service in Villiersdorp when deep conviction gripped the entire meeting. The Holy Spirit led their concern for sin, which turned into brokenness, tears and a spontaneous calling on the mercy of God. Each evening the people gathered in meetings of up to three hours. The numbers swelled and attendance increased from 350 to 500. Sometimes a score of people could be heard praying simultaneously. Nothing else was talked about and more than a hundred villagers were converted, including the roughest and most reckless men in the district, but the believers were transformed into fearless witnesses, testifying with great power, urging friends to respond and praying for them by name in the open meetings. One young man became a pioneer missionary in Nigeria. Three months after the revival started, the minister appealed for help from his colleagues, because it was spreading. This moving of the Spirit began to influence thirty other Dutch Reformed congregations, chiefly in the Western Cape, the Boland and the Eastern Province.
Still in 1905, the news from the revival in Villiersdorp caused the Christians in the Karoo town of Prins Albert to start with prayer meetings in homes. Soon the homes were too small and they met at the schoolhouse. One Sunday evening the Holy Spirit caused a spirit of conviction to break out among people of all ages. Even the children of the parish became so concerned that they filled another hall in the village, astounding the leaders and adults with their prayers for their own salvation, their families and friends. Whole households got converted, many of them led to the Lord by their own children.
In September 1905 Rev William M. Douglas of the Methodist Church, who had ministered powerfully in the Eastern Cape and in the Karoo, was invited to Wellington for a convention. He shared the ministry with Albert Head, a well-known speaker from England. Dr Andrew Murray presided over the convention. A conviction settled over the gathering and soon scenes of revival surfaced as people sought blessing for their souls. A prayer meeting with two hundred people present continued into the early hours of the morning and led by Rev Douglas, it became the focal point of the convention.
          The initial promise of Murray’s vision never came to fulfilment. Satan hit back through his favourite weapon: divide and rule. Racial pride and discrimination - legalized after 1948 in South Africa - wrecked the promising beginnings.
3.  The spiritual cradle of the new South Africa
          Bo-Kaap and Onderkaap (the latter was later called Kanalladorp and District Six) can be regarded as the spiritual cradle of the new South Africa in many a way.  It was the slaves of Bo-Kaap who started to develop the language of Afrikaans, and it was in the former slum-like District Six where poor people from all over congregated. After a distorted interpretation of Scripture had led to worldwide White arrogance and racial pride at the end of the 19th Century, a move for the dignity of people of colour started to take root in District Six, notably at the AME Church in Blythe Street and the Volkskerk in Gray Street. After Jews from Lithuania had joined the fray at the Cape at the end of the 19th century, District Six became truly cosmopolitan with Jews, Muslims and Christians living harmoniously next to each other, and a foretaste of the Rainbow Nation was forged.
Indigenous leadership blocked and stifled
The vision of Van Lier, Van der Kemp and the Moravian Bishop Hallbeck at Genadendal to empower Khoi and slaves for leadership diminished significantly during the 19th century. The gifting of people of colour was simultaneously not appreciated sufficiently. A sad development of the last decades of the 19th century was that this combined with ambition and rebellion by a few ministers of colour who evidently did not understand the nature of the Gospel properly.
            Black dislike of Whites was a common characteristic of those ministers who broke away to start their own denominations. It is natural to deduce that they had bad examples of leaders who lorded over them, not allowing their understudies to develop their full potential.
            A case in point is Reverend Joseph John Forbes. Starting off as a teacher, he was ordained as a Methodist minister in 1918 at their Buitenkant Street fellowship on the outskirts of District Six. He withdrew from the church owing to differences on the colour question, accepting a call to the Congregational Church soon hereafter. There he did not last long before leaving to start his own church and denomination, the Volkskerk van Afrika’, in Gray Street (District Six) on 14 May, 1922. This visionary had the courage of his conviction to start a denomination for the uplifting of the poor from the Cape to Cairo. That is the reason he gave his church a continental name. His leadership qualities had clearly been overlooked and spurned because thereafter he became one of the greatest church planters at the Cape, starting an orphanage, five schools and congregations as far afield as Kimberley.
    The first clearly discernable indigenous church planting move at the Cape after Genadendal - which is actually not in the Cape Peninsula - thus started in District Six. A strong element of ‘Coloured’ Nationalism was present when Joseph Forbes started his ‘Volkskerk van Afrika’. In only 14 years there were already 13 branches, 6 normal schools (as opposed to night schools) and an orphanage at Jonkersdam, which was later transferred to the Lawrencia Institution, Kraaifontein. What was very significant of this denomination was that they had a special anthem, which was sung at their annual commemoration, hailing the protea, ‘blom van ons vaderland’ (flower of our fatherland). The denomination made inroads in geographical areas where the traditional churches had become slack. They even started a church in Genadendal, the first mission station of the Moravians. The new denomination was later governed from Stellenbosch, and expanded to places like Oudtshoorn and far-away Kimberley.

Effect of Student Christian outreach
A significant spiritual influence at the Cape was John Mott’s Student Christian Movement, along with the Edinburgh meeting of evangelicals in 1910. All this looked set to spur on worldwide evangelization. The Cape was in the thick of things through the presence of Dr Andrew Murray. John Mott, the renowned preacher and leader of a global divine work among students, who mobilised many of them for missions, spoke at the Huguenot Hall in Orange Street at the beginning of the 20th century. This ushered in the establishment of the Students’ Christian Association (SCA).  The work of the SCA at Victoria College – which would become the University of Stellenbosch, along with the South African College School, the forerunner of UCT - had a significant effect on individuals. This movement had a notable influence on Jan H. Hofmeyr, who was poised to become the successor of Jan Smuts as Prime Minister had the Nationalists not come into power in 1948. Hofmeyr was a fervent supporter of the SCA.

Early conciliatory Black Church leaders
Over the years the church in South Africa has been a major conduit for peace and reconciliation. Strong personalities like Reverend John Dube and Professor D.D.T. Jabavu had been playing a moderating and conciliatory role in the early days of the ANC. Successive White governments failed to appreciate the gold of human resources, by not listening to Black church leaders. Substantial resistance to the oppressive race policies came as a rule from the ranks of these church leaders until the 1950s. One of the most prominent of them was South Africa’s first laureate of the Nobel Prize for, Peace, Albert Lutuli. After he had been dismissed as chief in November 1952, he responded with his famous sentence ‘The Road to Freedom is via the Cross’.
Long before Black Theology was in vogue, Lutuli expressed his conviction that apartheid degrades all who are party to it. He was optimistic, despite all evidence to the contrary, that Whites would sooner or later be compelled to change heart and accept a shared society. Lutuli was elected ANC president-general by a large majority in the following month, followed by his cross - bans imposed in early 1953 were renewed in the ensuing years. Lutuli was not around anymore to experience the freedom which Nelson Mandela walked into, but he paved the way.

Evangelism Explosion in the Mother City
Mr Frederick George Lowe came to Cape Town in 1896 as a concerned Anglican and businessman who sold cheap clothing. He soon got involved with the poor and needy, especially at the time of the Bubonic plague in 1901. Lowe started what he called the City Slum Mission in 1902. This outreach remained fairly obscure, until the Bubonic plague hit the Mother City once again in 1915 - especially the areas of Salt River and Woodstock. The compassionate work of the City Slum Mission now became more widely known. Frederick George Lowe’s death on June 2, 1924 hit the headlines. After his death the mission received its present name, the Cape Town City Mission. Over the years churches and all sorts of institutions of compassion were started all over the Peninsula. The combination of evangelism and compassionate outreach – which they learned from their models, the Glasgow City Mission and the Salvation Army, became an integral part of their ministry. 
            Things started to change in the 1930s. The depression of the early 1930s appears to have caused a new fire for evangelism. The start of the Docks Mission is a case in point. When John Crowe listened to an open-air service by the Salvation Army in Adderley Street in 1932, he was touched.  How happy his prayerful mother was when he shared with her that he had decided to follow Jesus! The ‘slightly Coloured’ family - as those with a fair complexion from that racial group were called - attended the Baptist Church in the Mother City’s Wale Street. Almost immediately the 18-year old Crowe wanted to share the gospel with other people in the neighbourhood of Roggebaai - the area where Andrew Murray also evangelized. With his namesake John Johnson, he soon struck a partnership, getting involved in open-air services at different places. Later they were especially active on the Grand Parade, Cape Town’s Hyde Park Corner, where various political groups and others held their meetings. Harold, Johnson’s brother, joined them at a later stage. When people started committing their lives to Jesus through their ministry, they asked for permission to conduct meetings in one of the Railway cottages that soon became too small. They then rented a wood-and-iron construction that was called the ‘Tin Shanty.’

                                      4.  A good mix of prayer and compassion

The spurning and suppression of women with regard to leadership went a completely different route. Instead of becoming bitter and resentful, Black women especially appeared to have accepted male leadership gracefully. Until the late 1940s churches organised activities among these women. They tended to focus at the Cape around church-based voluntary associations.

Spiritual vitality of praying women
The manyanos (the Xhosa word for prayer unions) would often allow the men to formally open meetings, in which they participated as speakers. The manyanos turned out to be instruments of Black empowerment virtually second to none. Women leaders would not only pray and preach, but here also their dignity and political awareness developed. The practices and hurts of apartheid society was possibly the reason for determined resistance in the 1950s, reshaping their meetings to provide more practical instruction and community activism.
            Whereas White and some ‘Coloured’ church women’s groups concentrated on fund raising, Black women soon amended their name to ‘Prayer and Service Union.’ The social and mutual support offered by prayer groups helped to compensate for the isolation and poor social structures, which Western missionaries held up as models. Testimonies, preaching and spontaneous prayer became the lifeblood of Black Christian groups. In the prayer groups they could develop their potential as orators without first having to be literate. In general, the spiritual life of manyano women appears to have been more creative and vital than that of the other racial groups. Dawn prayer meetings and nights of prayer vigils were quite common.
Christian Compassion in District Six and Bo-Kaap
The Nanniehuis of Bo-Kaap likewise showed the way of compassion. Anna Tempo, the initiator of the project, was the daughter of slaves from Mozambique. She became the matron of the Stakeby-Lewis Hostel in Harrington Street. With this move that started in District Six, care was provided for unwedded mothers and prostitutes. The Nanniehuis became the model for similar projects in other parts of the country after Ms Tempo had been awarded the King George Coronation Medal for her work in 1937.
            By the early 1960s there were 288 welfare agencies in the city, of which less than half were run by religious organizations. The City Mission was by far the best known of them all. The combination of evangelism and compassionate outreach continued unabatedly.
            A special ministry of compassion to the city nightclubs from the early 1970s was based in the old Tafelberg Hotel of District Six. It was started amongst the youth of the White Dutch Reformed Church congregation of Wynberg. This ministry was birthed in prayer. Pietie Victor, who started his theological training in Stellenbosch in 1964, founded the compassionate ministry with his wife Annette, who was a social worker by profession. Only four young people of the fairly big youth group were initially prepared to join the couple for outreach on the streets and in the nightclubs on Friday nights. However, many of the young people came for Bible Study and prayer before the group left for the outreach that would take them into the early hours of Saturday morning.
If it was ever said that women are generally less sensitive about political injustice, this was proved wrong when the rights of ‘Coloureds’ to vote was taken away in the most crude way. The National Party government created a situation via the Senate to change the Union constitution to achieve this. Women rose up in protest, forming an organization that became known as the Black Sash, their black robes signifying their mourning over the erosion of justice in the country.
Noelle Robb, a resident of Bishop’s Court, was very much involved with both the Black Sash and the Christian Institute. She assisted Blacks who experienced problems because of the many legal entanglements spawned by the apartheid society.  Over the years Black Sash campaigning against oppressive legislation continued unwaveringly. Alongside such campaigns, Noelle Robb and others were actively involved with the victims of apartheid. The Advice Offices have been playing a unique role. These offices were first pioneered in Athlone in the Cape…’  

A power encounter on 13 August 1961
On 13 August 1961 Christian and Muslim spectators at the Green Point Track witnessed a spiritual power encounter. God used his servant Dominee Davie Pypers, who had ministered in St Stephen’s Church of Bo-Kaap and later at the Gestig congregation in Long Street. Because of publicity in the papers, 30,000 people of all races were jammed into the sports stadium. The venue quivered with excitement like at a rugby match. In the keenly contested debate, Ahmed Deedat started with the assertion that Jesus went to Egypt after the disciples had taken him from the cross. He thoroughly ridiculed the Christian faith, challenging Pypers to give a proof that Jesus died on the cross. The young dominee rose to the challenge by immediately stating that Jesus is alive and that He could there and then do the very things He was doing when He walked the earth.
          Dr David du Plessis, a Cape-born Pentecostal of note, who was used by God to bring about reconciliation between Christians of the most divergent denominational backgrounds, described the event as follows: ‘Taking a deep breath, he (Pypers) spoke loud and clear, „Is there anybody in this audience that, according to medical judgement, is completely incurable? Remember, it must be incurable...’ Of course, the stadium was abuzz by now. And then several men came along, carrying Mrs Withuhn, a White Christian lady, with braces all over her body. She was completely paralyzed. Pypers simply walked to her and without any ado prayed for her briefly and proclaimed: ‘In the name of Jesus, be healed!’ Immediately she dropped her crutches and began to move.
        The Green Point event thus resulted in a victory for the Cross, after the miraculous healing of Mrs Withuhn in the name of the resurrected Lord. However, the effect of the miracle was diminished by another news story that dominated the headlines. On that same day the report of the building of the Berlin Wall resounded throughout the world! A new type of battle was heralded in - the ‘cold war’ between Soviet Communism and Western Capitalism! Yet, many Muslims were deeply moved.
Government repression of the Church
Anglican leaders opposed apartheid from the outset. The Boer-Brit stigma, a traditional animosity as a legacy from the Anglo-Boer war at the end the 19th century was however clinging to the efforts of (Arch) Bishops Trevor Huddleston, Joost de Blank and French Breytag because they hardly had support from other churches. These church leaders were nevertheless household names in the opposition to the apartheid folly in the 1950s and 1960s.
            In the early 1970s the Anglicans were prominent in the church protest against apartheid principle and practice. Father Bernard Wrankmore called forth the anger of Prime Minister Vorster and his government in 1971 when he called for an inquiry into the death of Imam Abdullah Haron who died while in police custody on 27 September 1969. The St Paul’s Church of Bo-Kaap voiced its protest when an unusual memorial service was held in the crypt on 6 October 1969.
            The regime responded by banning clergymen, confiscating passports - e.g. from the leaders of the CI - and deporting foreigners like Dr Häselbarth, a Lutheran theologian. When the radical Reverend Dan M Wessels was banned and restricted to Genadendal from 1962-67, there was no protest from the church ranks. The ogre of government reprisals and Robben Island as a big scare, kept almost everybody silent. Many gifted people left the country in the late 1960s and early 1970s instead.
            Because of the harsh repression and the ‘kragdadige’ clampdown on all opposition by the government, the early 1960s were marked by indifference and inertia on the part of the church. In the second half of that decade one finds careful moves like the multi-racial Christian Institute. Reverend Theo Kotze, a former Methodist Minister in Sea Point, headed up an office of the organization in Mowbray, where the Institute of Race Relations was also accommodated. This building near to the station therefore soon became a thorn in the flesh of the government, on occasion petrol-bombed by government agents. The perpetrators of these actions were usually never apprehended. The occasional protest meeting organized by Theo Kotze and the Christian Institute were however usually only attended by a brave small crowd. Fear of interrogations by the notorious Spyker van Wyk, who was apparently never called to book for his atrocities in the apartheid era, kept many potential critics quiet.
            As a result of their stand on social issues, churchmen such as Rev. Theo Kotze, leader of the Western Cape CI and Dr Alex Boraine, MP and former president of the Methodist Conference, were harassed. Kotze was refused a passport to travel abroad to Germany at the invitation of the German government in Bonn. Dr Boraine was a target of a political campaign by the Minister of Justice, Mr Jimmy Kruger. Rev. Kotze later fled the country, but he and the CI had sowed the seed of prophetic protest against an idolatrous and heretic system of government.
            The relatively small D.F. Malan Airport of the Mother City did experience occasional protests when small groups of Christians would sing ‘Onward Christian soldiers’ every time a deported anti-apartheid fighter - often missionaries and foreign clergymen who had opposed the government - departed.
Government reprisals against peaceful Cape demonstrations
The end to the peaceful march by thousands of protesters against the pass laws in March 1960, having left Langa for the Caledon Square Police Station in Buitenkant Street, ushered in police brutality of a new dimension. The young student leader Philip Kgosana was arrested after initially being promised that he would meet with a government representative. The 1960s and 1970s saw the increased forced habitation of political prisoners on Robben Island. The infamous island gradually became the ‘University’ of the New South Africa. Many of those who were incarcerated there became government leaders after 1994.
          Students’ protests for equal education in June 1972 highlighted the determination of the government to enforce apartheid, using the police force for that purpose. The Mother City’s St George Cathedral became a famous venue for peaceful opposition to apartheid. White students were followed into the sanctuary by the police, who had broken up a peaceful demonstration using teargas. For me personally, this was also my baptism into more risky overt activism as a theological student of the Moravian Seminary in District Six.
        Young seminary students had a leading role in the preparations for a youth rally with the theme ‘Youth Power’ in the Old Drill Hall with Dr Beyers Naudé, the leader of the Christian Institute, as the speaker in November 1973. (With a few other ministers Beyers Naudé started the Christian Institute in 1963 along the lines of the Confessing Church in Nazi Germany.) The ‘Youth Power’ event took place just before I left for Germany in voluntary exile because of my ‘illicit’ friendship (according to apartheid prescript) to Rosemarie Göbel, whom I had met during a stint of studies in Germany. We married in March 1975.

         Low-key but effective opposition
         The Cape Town City Mission, with its modest beginnings at the beginning of the 20th century in District Six, soon had no less than four congregations in District Six, respectively in Aspeling, Constitution, Cross and Smart Street. Fenner Kadalie, son of the trade unionist Clements Kadalie, became one of the most famous sons of the mission. He was himself impacted by the work in District Six when he was seven year old.  Working closely with Bruce Duncan, Fenner Kadalie was going to become a pivot of massive expansion of the Mother City’s most well-known institution of compassion. When the community was forced out of District Six by cruel legislation, Fenner Kadalie and his right hand, a young Bruce Duncan, gathered the scattered remnants of the District Six fellowships, ministering to their needs in their new homes on the Cape Flats. Fenner Kadalie was a catalyst for the birth of many upliftment projects in and around Cape Town.
                     Under the inspiring leadership of Rev. Bruce Duncan and Fenner Kadalie the denomination grew rapidly in the 1970s, getting involved in various ministries of compassion. Bruce Duncan, an unsung hero of the ‘struggle’ because he was not formally involved with politics, dared to speak out against the injustice of apartheid, communicating at the same time ‘with anyone from Constantia to Hanover Park and gained credibility with ganglords that few others have achieved’. Halls of the Cape Town City Mission developed into fully-fledged churches. The story has been told of a young man with an afro who walked into one of these churches while Barry Isaacs was preaching. ‘He kept coming back until he eventually committed his life to Christ’. The man, Lorenzo Davids and Reverend Barry Isaacs now serve together as leaders of The Cape Town City Mission.

The example of President Abraham Lincoln    
During the voyage on a steamer heading for Cape Town in February 1959 Michael Cassidy, another Southern African spiritual giant, was impacted deeply when he was challenged by a quote from John Foster Fraser: “When God desires to shake, shock or shape any age to save sinners, he always chooses.”  The Holy Spirit ministered to Michael Cassidy to be that man for Africa, more especially for South Africa. Immediately after his arrival in Cape Town, God used Archbishop Joost de Blank to refer to the neglect of evangelicals of “incarnational responsibilities”: ‘Then Joost said if only a man would arise who could confront the country with the necessity of synthesising the spiritual as well as political and social responsibilities of the gospel, the church would make real progress here. He added: “perhaps you are the man to do this”                         
            After leaving South Africa in January 1969 for Germany by ship, the author was personally moved to prayer for the Communist world after reading the Afrikaans translation of the Romanian Pastor Richard Wurmbrand’s autobiographical book Tortured for Christ on board. Along with believers in different parts of the world, I started to pray regularly for persecuted Christians in Eastern Europe and China.
        Back in Cape Town in 1970 I was still nowhere near being a faithful prayer warrior, but I definitely sensed a need to pray for our country. Early one October morning in 1972, while I was on my knees praying for the country at the Moravian Seminary in District Six, I felt constrained to write a letter to the Prime Minister. In this letter, I addressed Mr Vorster with ‘Liewe’ (dear). That was definitely something extraordinary. My natural feelings towards him were not that charitable. In this letter I challenged the State President to let himself be used by God like Abraham Lincoln in the USA, to lead the nation to the ways of God. No head of state personified a humbling before God in history more than like Abraham Lincoln. On no less than nine separate occasions during his 49 month reign as president, he called for public penitence, fasting prayer and thanksgiving. The first of the nine calls on 12 August 1861 ‘characteristically brought ‘humbling ourselves’ to the fore in recommending a day of public humiliation, fasting and prayer…’
        The Bible verse starting with ‘if my people humble themselves and pray …’ (2 Chronicals 7:14) became one of the favourites of Michael Cassidy. He used Lincoln’s example to challenge John Vorster and Ian Smith, the prime ministers respectively of South Africa and Rhodesia (of much of the 1970s, to do the same by giving them a copy each of Lincoln’s biography with the title Abraham Lincoln, Theologian of American Anguish. Cassidy himself would be God’s instrument in the turbulent 1985 to call not only the National Initiative for Reconciliation (NIR) from 10 to12 September, but also as a pivot in a national day of prayer by this group on October 9, i.e. less than a month later.

        At and in the church building adjacent to the seminary, the former Moravian Hill manse, significant moves towards the first Global Day of Prayer was to occur on the 1990s and especially on 9 May 2004. At every prayer event on the Newlands Rugby Stadium from 21 March 2001, red wrist bands were given to the public which displayed 2 Chronicals 7:14.

Student Outreach
Even though Michael Cassidy did not start Campus Crusade in South Africa, hardly any other agency impacted campuses in the country more than AE. Already in 1965, their first year of fulltime ministry, the University of Natal invited them. This was followed by visits to other universities in South Africa and Lesotho in the ensuing years. The University of Cape Town had its turn in 1969 and Stellenbosch in 1980. In the effort to call the modern campus back to its true centre in the person of Jesus, who is the Truth in person, AE never shunned difficulties. In the main address on University Evangelism at the Lausanne Congress on World Mission in 1974, Michael Cassidy stated that: ‘the Christian has a unique right to be on the campus, not simply as an agent of evangelism, but as an agent of reminder that the university as we know it is really a uniquely Christian creation. It was born out of the mediaeval synthesis with its unified Christian worldview… Jesus as heart of the universe, was the key to everything… The university is the offspring of the logos doctrine, “for in Him are hid all the treasures of wisdom and Knowledge”…
          Africa Enterprise would not shun difficulties. But they would get prayer support worldwide well ahead of time such as when they tried on two occasions to have campaigns at Fort Hare in the 1970s when it had the extremes of South African society wrapped up there; a government-controlled administration and the home of black power. Both efforts – in 1975 and 1976 respectively - had to be aborted, the former one shortly before the mission when there rector fear that the campus ‘might so explode that we would have to close it down.
          In September 1976 the South African AE team held a mission to the Teachers’ Training College in the Capetonian suburb Mowbray. This was their best outreach yet to a teachers’ college. They were thankful to the Christian students who prepared thoroughly for the mission ‘in a fervency of prayer’.  Michael Cassidy and Festo Kivangere visited and preached as equals in the Afrikaner stronghold of Stellenbosch. This was a bold step, building on the foundation laid by Professor Nico Smith at the Theological Faculty. With evangelical involvement in the Black ghetto of Soweto since 1976, Africa Enterprise was to be God’s choice instrument for change in Africa over the next decades.

Charismatic Renewal impacts the Cape
Before he came to Cape Town Archbishop Bill Burnett had a spiritual conversion experience. Having been touched by the Spirit, this coloured all his subsequent thinking. The Charismatic Renewal had already started to influence individual mainline churches. In 1964 the Cape-born David du Plessis, who was nicknamed ‘Mr Pentecost’, introduced the charismatic renewal to the Roman Catholic Church. Slowly this started to sicker through into the Anglican Church. With the high profile Archbishop Bill Burnett coming to St George Cathedral in 1974, the movement got a major push. More and more clergy experienced this particular renewal. Dean King, a clergyman at St George’s Cathedral at the time, describes the ensuing situation in the Anglican Church as follows: ‘Real Christians now became Bible-carrying Christians and the exorcism of demonic spirits and healing of the sick became experienced realities. The hills were alive with the sound of music, guitars appeared in churches everywhere; testimonies astounded us; lives were undoubtedly changed; faith became alive for people…Young men developed vocations to the ministry in fairly large numbers, and the criteria for this were often their acquaintance with the Spirit and their certainty that they had found the way.’
            A negative element of the movement was that many believers, for example those who did not ‘speak in tongues’ were confused and left outside, questioning the depth and reality of their own faith. The turmoil in his bishopric however did not affect the clear witness of Archbishop Bill Burnett with regard to the government. ‘Apartheid (rightly) was now seen as the worship of false gods’ The clear language from St George’s Cathedral did not miss its target in this regard. The Roman Catholic Church was now suddenly allowed to broadcast via the state-controlled South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) because ‘they were more realistic… on the question of avoiding matters racial and political.’ In due course, St George’s Cathedral went silent altogether in respect of public broadcasting.
          The Charismatic Renewal played a significant role in breaking down the racial barriers. Thus it would become no exception for Whites to visit the Roman Catholic Church in Bonteheuwel in the 1990s.

From Nairobi to the Cape
At the Pan-African Christian Leadership Assembly (PACLA) in Nairobi (1976) tensions between Black and White South African delegates spilled over into the wider conference. Professor David Bosch from Unisa was divinely used when he addressed the conference. Hearts began to melt as he spoke self-critically: ‘We have failed to create the new community in Africa… which should be an alternative to all other communities on earth. Have we really understood what Jesus came to do on earth? … Reconciliation is no cheap matter. Reconciliation presupposes confrontation… Reconciliation presupposes an operation, as cutting into the very bone without anaesthetic. The abscess of hate and mistrust and fear, between Black and White, between nation and nation, between rich and poor, has to be slashed open.’ That speech turned out to be very strategic, paving the way for the South African Christian Leadership Assembly (SACLA) in Pretoria in 1979. Here, seed for the new South Africa was sown. A group of delegates from Stellenbosch around Professor Nico Smith and Koinonia, a movement that organised inter-racial weekends in different towns and cities of the country, decided to continue the SACLA fellowship locally.
        A result was that at least one Afrikaner theological student was delivered from a racist posture towards Blacks in 1980 after a meeting at Stellenbosch University with eleven hundred students. Bishop Festo Kivangere of Uganda was one of the speakers. The Afrikaner theological student was touched by the double feature sermon by Cassidy and Kivangere. The latter speaker pulled no punches on the theme of race relations, bringing the student to concede: ‘...I have been full of race prejudice. Today this brother has completely freed me.

Compassionate outreach challenges apartheid
In 1980 a young physician, Dr Ivan Toms, launched the SACLA clinic in Crossroads as a sequel to the big inter-denominational event in Pretoria in 1979. This was the first of its kind, after various denominations had started their own ministries of compassion in the informal settlement.
          When Black women from the homelands came to join their husbands in the Mother City in the late 1970s, this was followed by a new wave of police insensitivity and beastly behaviour. This came to a head in 1981 when ‘illegal’ women were forced out of their shacks and ‘repatriated’ to the Ciskei and Transkei where they belonged, according to the homelands apartheid policy.
          The aid of the South African Council of Churches  enabled women from the informal settlements of Nyanga and Crossroads to return to the Cape in May 1981, leading to the first clear ideological defeat of the apartheid government in the following winter, after these women had taken refuge in St George’s Cathedral.                   
        Some Stellenbosch Missiology students under Professor Nico Smith were worried that their denomination, the Dutch Reformed Church, seemed unperturbed by what was happening in Crossroads. Prof. Smith became very controversial when he heeded their request to take a group of these White theological students to Crossroads. After being called to book in an aftermath of the event, Smith agreed to refrain from making a statement to the secular press, only to come back forcefully a little later. He made a statement in what became a front-page report in the Kerkbode, their denominational mouthpieceIn his statement, Professor Smith criticised the government for its handling of the Nyanga ‘squatters’. Even more unconventionally, he lashed out at the church for its non-involvement in the situation. He and his students challenged the Dutch Reformed Church to address the ‘painful policy’ of resettlement and migratory labour. This was an important step towards dissidence in the denomination.
 5. Soweto impacts the country

The Church in Reconciliation in recent decades
The fear of a serious backlash after a takeover by a Black government in the 1970s and 1980s was quite pervasive among White communities and very understandable. The sparsely populated Botswana was the only country in Africa at that time where there had been a fairly smooth transition to democracy, a country with very few Whites. There had been warning voices from the side of individual White South African clergymen because of the country’s oppressive race policy, but they went unheeded. The role of Black spokesmen like Bishop Desmond Tutu was even less appreciated in the 1970s, especially when they referred to the bondage of Whites.
Yet, valuable seed was sown towards racial reconciliation by Black clergy who had a good track record and who were not known to be radicals like Desmond Tutu. One of them was Bishop Alpheus Zulu, who had been one of the few delegates of colour at the WCC-convened consultation in Cottesloe, a suburb of Johannesburg from 7-14 December, 1960. In his T.B. Davie Memorial Lecture at UCT in 1972, Bishop Zulu hopefully opened the eye of many a White person when he stated: ‘… Some black people... refuse consciously and deliberately to retaliate… calling a white man a beast.’ 
Long before the Soweto uprising he also warned: ‘At the same time it would be a grave mistake to presume to think that such attitudes will survive callous white discrimination.’  Warnings by Bishop Zulu and Bishop Tutu were not heeded by the authorities. Bishop Tutu wrote a pleading letter to the Prime Minister on May 6 1976 during a three day clergy retreat. This was just weeks before the eruption of violence after 16 June 1976, when protesting high school students were shot. More than anything else, this event brought church leaders back into the centre of racial reconciliation.


Reactions to 16 June 1976

The South African Council of Churches  (SACC) appealed to all Churches to give guidance and support to a shocked and bereaved society and to those who by virtue of the vote bore the responsibility for fuelling the oppressive structure. The SACC called on the churches to observe Sunday 20th June 1976 as a day of prayer, bringing to their attention II Chronicles 7:14. ‘If my people who are called by my name humble themselves and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and  heal their land.’
At the SACC conference in July 1976, Bishop Tutu set liberation firmly on the agenda in an address entitled, „God-given Dignity and the Quest for Liberation in the Light of the South African Dilemma.”  Tutu concluded with the following words:The struggle for liberation, a truly biblical struggle, is crucial for the survival of South Africa. It must succeed. Yes, liberation is coming because our God is the God of the Exodus, the liberator God. ‘If God is on our side, who is against us?
In the aftermath of Soweto 1976 the Anglican Archbishop Bill Burnett actualised 2 Chronicles 7:14, the Bible verse that would play such a crucial role in the transformation process in the new millennium. In an open letter to Mr B. J. Vorster in September 1976, he wrote: ‘Unless White Christians in particular admit the wrongs they have done to Black people and take action to redress them, there can be no possibility of healing in our Land.’ Not even exposure of corruption in the government Department of Information, which finally led to Mr P.W. Botha becoming the new Prime Minister in 1978, brought about change.

The example of the Christian Institute
The Christian Institute (CI) - started by Dr Beyers Naudé and a few other ministers, spurred churches on in resistance to apartheid. It was often the case that what the CI practised, the SACC, followed by its member churches, also did. It is thus important to examine how the CI responded to the uprising, to get an idea of the direction that the SACC and the churches would take in the future. The CI discerned that the initiative for change in South Africa lay firmly in the hands of the Black people. This in itself represented a fundamental shift from an earlier position they had held. In a statement immediately following the Soweto uprising, the CI said: ‘the Government is no longer in a position to determine the course of political events, not only in Soweto, but also in South Africa as a whole; nor is it capable of guiding in any way the nature, direction or pace of change.’
At their Pietermaritzburg conference on 18 September 1976, the CI showed an increasing political maturity in the far-reaching resolutions they took, contained in their State of the Nation statement. Amongst these was the demand for a National Convention. The CI proposed that Blacks be given the freedom to elect truly recognized leaders from their midst, including those in prison, and those who were in exile. These leaders would then ‘participate in a national convention with a view to dismantling in the shortest possible period the unjust political and social structures of our land and to present to our country a political policy of liberation based on freedom and justice for all.’ They saw any action, which fell short of this demand as ‘a dangerous stumbling block to the achievement of fundamental peaceful change.’ The radical stance of the CI ushered in its own demise. In 1977 the CI called upon their White ministers and members to publicly retract their support from the policies of the Government unequivocally, and to make personal and collective representations to their members of parliament to press for a conference of Black and White leaders, recognising that there could be no peace until all people were totally liberated.  (This call was echoed later in that year by Reverend Abel Hendricks, a Cape clergyman, to Methodist circuits throughout the country).  The CI position was apt to lead to government reprisals. The organisation was banned on 19 October 1977.

When someone must have been praying for me
In November 1978 I was terribly angered by the reaction by the Moravian Church Board to my suggestion to come and work in South Africa, and the response of the government when we wanted to travel in the same train compartment as a family of three from Cape Town to Johannesburg. My expectation was actually unreasonable but all the same I was hereafter determined not to put my foot onto South African soil again. I only had one last wish, namely to worship with Dr Beyers Naudé.
            Howard Grace, a British full-time worker with Moral Rearmament (MRA), fetched us from Park Station in Johannesburg. He had to bear the brunt of my anger. While I was still fuming, Howard suggested during the car trip to Umdeni (the villa of the movement, where we were going to stay in the rondavel for the next few days), that I meet the influential Professor Johan Heyns. The timing for his kind gesture was the worst one the Moral Rearmament worker could have chosen. At that point in time, I was definitely not prepared or interested to meet the chairman of the Broederbond!
            Someone - or perhaps even more than one person - must have been praying for me. God used Dr Naudé and the congregation where he worshipped, to supernaturally heal me of my intense bitterness and anger towards the country that I paradoxically loved so dearly. With a few believers linked to Moral Rearmament, Rosemarie and I visited the church that Dr Naudé and his wife attended. I had intended the visit to him to be my farewell gesture of solidarity with the politically oppressed of the country. A miracle happened that Sunday. I was changed from within, through the visit to the Naudé home and that of Ds Joop Lensink, a Dutch national, who ministered to Blacks in the mining compounds!

Determination to fight the demonic apartheid ideology
In His sovereign way God used the visit to Dr Beyers Naudé to make me more determined than ever to fight the demonic apartheid ideology, and to work towards racial reconciliation. The Moral Rearmament practice of writing down thoughts fueled my activist spirit. Hereafter I wrote various letters of protest to Cabinet ministers. From the time of our return to Holland after our six-week visit to South Africa, I saw a ministry of reconciliation now as my special duty to the country of my birth. As part of this effort, I collated personal documents and letters with more verve, hoping to get it published under the title ‘Honger na Geregtigheid’ (Hunger after Righteousness). In this manuscript I included and commented on my correspondence with the rulers of the day. Yet, I wanted to win the government over, rather than expose their practices abroad. As a means to this end, I targeted the Dutch Reformed theologians whom I believed could play a pivotal role.
          In my resolve to work towards racial reconciliation, I went out of my way to meet a Dutch Reformed Church delegation that included Dr O’Brien Geldenhuys and the Professors Willie Jonker and Johan Heyns at the Amsterdam airport Schiphol when they visited Holland in 1979. These three were going to be quite influential in bringing significant change to the Dutch Reformed Church in the years hereafter.

Africa Enterprise Involvement
The Road to the Global Day of Prayer would be incomplete without clear reference to the involvement of Africa Enterprise. Michael Cassidy and his Africa Enterprise (AE), the person and the organisation that had been so closely involved with PACLA and SACLA, did it again in the mid-1980s through ERA, a holistic approach bringing Evangelism, Reconciliation and Action together. The start of this new campaign took place in 1981 in the Cape violent suburb of Elsies River. Michael Cassidy was staying at the home of Rev. Njongonkulu Ndugane for the Elsies River Mission that deepened even more the burden for the Black townships in his heart. (Ndungane became the successor to Archbishop Desmond Tutu after the latter’s retirement). ‘He described lucidly how the misery impacted him: Human brokenness, personal fragmentation, marital heartbreak, incredible social dislocation and community disruption due to Group Areas legislation all stared us in the face with eyes of fire.
        From May 1984 onwards, meetings with businessmen were organized by AE. At what was called the ‘Top Level Encounter’ in Cape Town, Graham Power was impacted. The event had far-reaching spiritual consequences in some of the professions and industries of the Mother City. (In 2000 Graham Power would be God’s choice instrument to get the spiritual transformation of Cape Town off the ground when he was the catalyst for the prayer event at Newlands the following year).

 6. Brutal repression breads spiritual renewal

A season of major spiritual upheaval
The year 1985 could be regarded as the start of another season of major spiritual upheaval. The government repression of 1984/5 coincided with the increased activity of the United Democratic Front (UDF).  Christians were called to prayer for the ‘abolition of all apartheid structures’ and ‘the end to unjust rule’.
          The brutal repression of that year also caused conservative church groupings like the Baptist Union to take a public stand. Their national Assembly, which met in George, sent an unprecedented letter to the State President, clearly deviating from the common evangelical position, which expected that the church should not become involved with politics. 
          Michael Cassidy, the leader of the mission agency Africa Enterprise, issued a significant ‘Statement of intent’ on 18 July 1985. Four hundred Christian leaders, drawn from 48 denominations, cleared their diaries and cancelled engagements to come to Pietermaritzburg for three days of consultation and the inauguration of the National Initiative for Reconciliation (NIR) from 10 to 12 September 1985. The call for a national day of prayer by this group on October 9, i.e. less than a month later, was widely followed.
          On that day over thirteen hundred people participated in the Mother City’s St George’s Cathedral lunch-hour service and there were reports of Christians of all denominations meeting in one another’s churches to pray together. ‘In Cape Town we broke out of our islands as never before.’  However, the harsh repression by the government and its agents continued unabatedly.

Funerals as catalysts for change
A race war was building up towards a major climax in the mid-1980s. Possibly the second biggest funeral at the Cape ever, took place on Saturday 21 September 1985 in the township of Gugulethu. The funeral had a clear political nature. It was the funeral of 11 victims of police action, including Ayanda Limekaya, a two month old baby, who died after inhaling too much teargas. This definitely set off a chain reaction of spiritual waves that finally led to the release of Nelson Mandela in February 1990. The start of the traditional march on 21 September 1985 to the cemetery was described as follows: ‘Within ten minutes it has swollen to 20,000, 25,000 then it becomes impossible to estimate the numbers.’ This transpired in spite of many roadblocks put up by the police and army to stop people from other places joining the funeral. 

God at work behind the scenes
Behind the scenes, God was at work. The roadblocks could not prevent the consciences of some Whites being touched.
        On 22 September 1985, the day after the funeral, Dr. Charles Robertson, who had been a lecturer at the nearby ‘Coloured’ University of the Western Cape from 1972-76, was spiritually moved during his quiet time. Sensitivity grew amongst Whites that would finally enable Mr F.W. de Klerk to take the risk of asking the White electorate for permission to vote themselves out of power in a referendum on 17 March 1992.
Events followed each other up in quick session at the Cape at this time. In a tragic incident in Thornton Road, Athlone, on 15 October 1985, police jumped suddenly out of a parked truck, shooting indiscriminately at passers-by. Willem Steenkamp, a conservative writer, reported in his Cape Times column about what became known around the world as the ‘Trojan horse’ or the ‘Jack-in-the-Box’ event: ‘Film taken on scene shows railway policemen laying down a heavy column of indiscriminate shotgun fire...’ An eye witness described a similar scene in Crossroads three days later, printed in the Cape Times: ‘Suddenly the police jumped out and opened fire, but they did not shoot the people who had thrown the petrol bomb, they shot two men (dead) who … were walking down the road. One was standing still when they shot him, and when his friend tried to run away, they shot him too’. The Cape Peninsula exploded and the state of emergency was extended to include the Cape on 26 October 1985.

An advance guard for seven years of prayer
Furthermore, World Literature Crusade launched their Change the World School of Prayer in the early 1980s. The South African prayer manual was published in Cape Town in 1981. It seems as if the manual was not very widely distributed. World Literature Crusade’s publication might have been the advance guard for the seven years of prayer for the Soviet Union, and the prayer victories at the end of the 1980s. The group in California (USA) documented some of their experiences, praying systematically over 40,000 continuous hours.
          Charles Robertson, who was very much involved in the launching of the initiative at the Cape, wrote that the vision of the School of Prayer was ‘to see a million Christians in South Africa pray for revival and world evangelism by the end of 1986.’ The first school was held in Cape Town, attended by 1,130 people over two weekends.
          It is appropriate that the revived prayer movement started at the Cape where Andrew Murray had written his School des Gebeds in 1885, and it is also very fitting that Charles Robertson and his wife Rita would donate the property where the first NUPSA (Network of United Prayer in Southern Africa) School of Prayer was to be erected in 2000.
          The Change the World School of Prayer appears to have inspired the initiators of a booklet, published by Hospital Christian Fellowship (HCF, later called Healthcare Christian Fellowship). The Change the World School of Prayer suggested that believers pray strategically, and that they pray for 100 unevangelized Chinese and Arab-Moslem nations. The Dutch section of the Hospital Christian Fellowship in Voorthuizen, which had South Africa’s Dr Francis Grim as its worldwide leader, was probably God’s instrument, motivating Christians towards a month of prayer for selected Muslim countries, with the publication of a little booklet in the early 1990s. They referred to specific needs in a 31-day prayer guide. In turn, this appears to have been the model for the 30-day Prayer Focus that went around the globe during Ramadan in the years from 1993. Dr Peter Hammond, the founder of the Cape agency Frontline Fellowship, testified to the deep personal influence of Dr Francis Grim in his life.

Pentecostals usher in transformation
Evangelicals in general, Cape Pentecostals in particular, were not known for radical change. In fact, they were regarded as reactionary, supporting the racist structures of Cape society. In July 1981 a young final UCT student, Paul Daniel, had been coming from a dramatic conversion experience in answer to the prayers of his grandmother after the death of his younger brother. (His grandmother became a follower of Jesus through the ministry of the Pentecostal pioneer John G. Lake). After his conversion Paul Daniel led many of his friends and colleagues at the University of Cape Town (UCT) to Christ. In the early 1980s UCT was very much a bastion of atheism and agnosticism. Soon a prayer group developed, where they prayed nightly from 22h through till 3 o’clock the next morning. A mini revival came to the campus. From these pristine beginnings a fellowship was formed in later years that was to impact the Cape in no small way.
        The Pentecostal Protestant Church (PPC), much better known in the Afrikaner version, the PPK, could be regarded as a stronghold of apartheid practice in the 1960s and 1970s in the Boerewors curtain of the Cape, the northern suburbs. No one would have suspected that from this denomination one of the most radical changes of Cape Society would emanate.
        Pastor Waldi Snyman had a dramatic call from the Lord to leave the PPC within seven days, otherwise the Lord would raise someone else in his stead. He had been a pioneer of the church, from the days when the fellowship had been in Tiervlei next to the railway line until it finally moved into the premises of the Lantern, a former cinema of Parow. At the time his brother was a leader of the denomination. He had already caused something of a stir by marrying the Irish background Colleen, who had started learning Afrikaans in Bloemfontein, where the couple had met. Yet, when they left the denomination, to start a new non-denominational fellowship, this was still no earthquake, but it did cause a significant stir, because as a part of the call the Lord implored Snyman to start using English in stead of Afrikaans. The church was to be there for all people, thus challenging the traditional racial and language prejudices of the mid 1980s. The new fellowship had been a White Afrikaner congregation. The new fellowship linked up with a national move of the Holy Spirit through charismatic Pentecostal preachers like Ray McCauley, Nicky van der Westhuizen, Henry Theo ?? Wolmarans and Ed Roebert. All over the country were established which called themselves ‘Christian Centre’. However, they did not regard themselves as a Rhema denomination as such. In 198? the Parow church became known as the Lighthouse Christian Centre. The fellowship that was destined to play a pivotal role in the run-up to the Global Day of Prayer after the first Transformation video of George Otis was screened there in October 1999.

Seeds of Confession start to germinate
In the early 1980s Dr Nico Smith visited Bilthoven in Holland, only a few kilometres from Zeist where we were living at the time. I visited him there. This resulted in some correspondence among others with Professor Johan Heyns. In my letters I had suggested confession for apartheid as the place to start, to be followed by restitution.
Johan Heyns’ metamorphosis continued dramatically in the ensuing years, while chairing a synod commission Church and Society. At the 1986 General Synod in Cape Town, the report of this commission almost brought the White sector of the Dutch Reformed Church to a 180 degree change in respect of apartheid. In the (White) General Synod, the seed of confession appeared to have started to germinate. In the policy document ‘Church and Society’ it was formulated in so many words that ‘a forced separation and division of peoples cannot be considered a biblical imperative. The attempt to justify such an injunction as derived from the Bible must be recognized as an error and are to be rejected.’
           Yet, this position was not supported by the rank and file church member. Rightwing elements were perturbed that Church and Society actually included confession of sin concerning the part played by the churches, for example in causing suffering through the implementation of apartheid.

Chickens coming home to roost
In the meantime, the clinic in Crossroads, the township that Professor Nico Smith had visited with his students, continued to do fine work under Dr Ivan Thoms, the young doctor. But when the chickens came home to roost in the resistance against the tri-cameral system of government a few years further on, Crossroads was one of the first to erupt at the Cape. Worse was to come in 1986 when the place was virtually in a state of civil war.
        On 9 June 1986 the Community Centre of Crossroads, which had sheltered over two thousand refugees on the chilly night before, was torched. Dr Di Hewitson and a nurse, Dorcas Cyster, risked their lives as committed Christians in service to the battered and bruised. The SACLA clinic was located in the Witdoeke area while many of the Clinic’s workers came from the Comrades turf. Even as they came to work, they were accused of going to tend to the wounds of the enemy. Michael Cassidy summed up the situation, which epitomised the dilemma of the country at that time in a prayer: ‘O God, only you can resolve all this. And without the power of prevailing prayer, our land will never be healed or saved.’ Cassidy sensed that ‘the Lord needs his people not just in prayer but in active peacemaking in such polarised contexts.’
 7. New Prayer Initiatives
Prayer moves in District Six and Woodstock
It is noteworthy that the second phase of resistance with regard to the removal of ‘Coloureds’ from District Six was started by a prayer campaign. The vehicle to carry the prayer campaign was the District Six Ministers’ Fraternal, an energetic group of clergymen from a few local churches. The Roman Catholic priest, Father Basil van Rensburg, who came with advertising skills in September 1978, launched the new prayer campaign: ‘our aim is to start in a small way with Holy Cross as a nucleus and gradually to build a forceful campaign of prayer and action until official thinking on District Six changes.’ The priest of St Philip’s Anglican Church expressed some of this commitment as he invited other congregations to join in prayer: ‘May we all by the Power of His Holy Spirit seek nothing else but a miracle from the Lord.’ Lay people were well represented in the Friends of District Six, an offspring of the District Six Ministers’ Fraternal. The members came not only from the above-mentioned churches but also from other circles, notably Muslims and Jews. Among those who joined were the Black Sash, the National Council for Women, the Civil Rights League and the Institute of Race Relations.
          That a part of the old District Six and Walmer Estate were later formally declared ‘Coloured’ residential areas was surely partly due to these prayers and efforts. Some people alleged that it was a sop by the government to keep the protesters happy.  Nevertheless, Whites hereafter refused to buy property in District Six en masse, possibly not wanting to be identified with the perpetrators of the injustice. This created some embarrassment to the government, but the suggestion that District Six should become an open residential area was not going to bring the Friends of District Six off course, not even for the time being. That District Six never became a White suburb was surely an answer to prayer. In fact, God turned the injustice perpetrated in District Six around, stirring the conscience of White South Africa like few other apartheid measures had done.

Conciliatory church moves
It would probably be safe to say that other factors like the 40 years of apartheid oppression – combined with the prophetic WCC and SACC actions between 1948 and 1988 – helped to conscientise the poor and the oppressed. In this, the situation was radicalised towards the inevitable conflict.
            The revolutionary situation after 1985 possibly influenced Mr F.W. De Klerk, the pragmatic new presidential incumbent in 1989, towards a more conciliatory approach. Such a scenario also normally calls for more prayer. We can safely surmise that more people were agonizing in prayer for an end to the killings and violence than before.
            Furthermore, the seed sown through my correspondence with Dutch Reformed theologians, seemed to have germinated thoroughly. The Rustenburg meeting of church leaders in November 1990 where delegates from 97 denominations had gathered, sent signals of reconciliation throughout the land that augured well for the future. There Professor Willie Jonker started the ball of confession rolling, ushering in the new South Africa.  The document issued after the Rustenburg event, contained specific and concrete confession like their misuse of the Bible and their being ‘bold in condemning apartheid but timid in resisting it’. The confessions were not one-sided at all. The victims acknowledged for example their ‘timidity and fear, failing to challenge our oppression.’
The government of the day and Afrikaners in general slammed the Rustenburg confessions. Were they forgetting that it had been President F.W. de Klerk himself who had originally initiated the idea of such a national church conference, or were they too surprised at the outcome? Be that as it may, a deep impact was definitely made in the spiritual realm.
When matters were very volatile in Natal in 1991, churches played a big role in the National Peace Accord that was brokered. After the introduction of the transitional government, churches retained a high profile in the process of reconciliation.
An instrument used by God in a special way was the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The success of the implementation of the nitty-gritty must be contributed to the input and integrity of Archbishop Desmond Tutu. One of the commissioners, Alex Boraine, who himself had been a former minister in the Cape suburb of Pinelands and a former president of the Methodist Church before becoming a Progressive Party member of Parliament, described Tutu’s role as follows: ‘I don’t think the Commission could have survived without the person and leadership of Desmond Tutu… He assisted the Commission tremendously in every possible way to become an instrument for healing…’ 

Prayer initiatives of the North that affected the Cape
What happened through Gerda Leithgöb and Bennie Mostert in 1987 are examples of divine calls received by other people on a congregational level. A visit to Singapore in 1988 by Gerda Leithgöb, at that stage a virtually unknown prayer warrior from Pretoria, became a spur for worldwide prayer for South Africa. With her prayer team Leithgöb had been involved with spiritual warfare, amongst other things with confession at the Voortrekker Monument in Pretoria. In the country itself she became the pioneer for spiritual mapping, using the results of research for informed prayer. (Leithgöb taught and implemented spiritual mapping quite effectively. This is a tool that had been introduced in 1991 by a well-known American, George Otis).
          Even in remote parts of South Africa people were praying because of the escalating, explosive situation in the country. Thus vastly different groups, like one in the Mother City, which gathered on a weekly basis, as well as Black women in the Soutpansberg Mountains, interceded for the country to be spared massive bloodshed and for an end to the misery caused by apartheid.
In 1989 Kjell Sjöberg, from Sweden, visited South Africa on an assignment to pray at ‘the ends of the earth’. Here they prayed at Cape Agulhas. A national prayer network was formed that started linking with international prayer agencies. All of this happened fairly quietly and unnoticed. 

Cape Prayer endeavours of the early 1990s
Arthur J Rowland, a committed believer who had a close friendship with Dr Andrew Murray when he started teaching as a young man at the Boys’ High School in Wellington in 1912, had a deep interest and involvement in prayer, evangelism and missions as was his son Noel, such as starting a Cape Town Keswick. Both kept their interest, based at the Cape Town Baptist Church till ripe old age, the father dying in 1973 at the age of 102 and Noel just short of the century mark. Reverend Roger Voke kept the fire of the Keswick movement alive at the Cape. Dr Andrew Murray had started it in Wellington towards the end of the 19th century. In the late 1980s the Concerts of Prayer - inspired by David Bryant - drew good crowds in the Sendingsgestigmuseum, a fitting commemoration of the inter-denominational work that started there in 1899.  The Concerts of Prayer later moved to the Presbyterian Church in Mowbray.
Much of the prayer endeavours of the early 1990s were connected to missionary work. David Bliss from OM had already put the Cape on the map again with his Bless the Nations conferences.  The Western Cape Missions Commission, to which our WEC colleague Shirley Charlton took the author soon after our arrival at the Cape, proved very valuable in terms of contacts. Here I met among other strategic people, Martin Heuvel and Bruce van Eeden. One of the events organised in 1993 with some link to the Western Cape Missions Commission was a workshop with John Robb of World Vision. I used the list of participants at this event to organize Jesus Marches the following year.
           Martin Heuvel and Bruce van Eeden were instrumental in bringing the missions vision to the ‘Coloured’ churches. Heuvel had the vision to start a cheap Bible School, at his church in Ravensmead, the Cape School of Missions. James Selfridge, an Irish missionary from the Metropolitan Church, got involved with this Bible School at an early stage. Martin Heuvel was also instrumental in a ministry with Muslim background believers to be revived when he challenged the author to this effect in 1992. The occasion was the distribution of invitations to a pending visit of Patrick Johnstone to the Cape. Together with Alain and Nicole Ravelo, a small group of converts was gathered at their home in Southfield once a month. 
          An indigenous evangelistic and church planting effort called Kingdom Ministries started under the leadership of Alfie Fabe when the Cape Town City Mission decided to let its churches become independent from its charity arm. All these efforts fizzled out towards the end of the 20th century, while Gauteng grew in importance with regard to missionary-sending from South Africa.
          Bishop Frank Retief and his St James Church in Kenilworth were carrying the evangelical banner for the mainline churches in the early 1990s at the Cape. The Lighthouse Christian Centre in Parow was a new growing church, as was His People, which started among students in the Baxter Theatre, Rosebank. The Good Hope Christian Centre became increasingly known when it moved from the Three Arts Theatre in Plumstead, to Ottery. These three originally White churches attracted people of colour while the country was in transition towards the new democracy.

Personal Challenges
Patrick Johnstone, author of the well-known Operation World, met his first wife Jill, while they were missionaries with the Dorothea Mission in Southern Africa. At the beginning of 1991, when we were in Bulstrode for a part of our missionary training, our children joined the Operation World Children's Club. Jill Johnstone, the first wife of Patrick Johnstone, the author of Operation World, had just been diagnosed with cancer when we came to Bulstrode, near London, in January 1991 for our candidates’ orientation to become missionaries of WEC International. Jill still passionately wanted children to be inspired to pray for the world, dreaming of a book that would help them do so. With a group of children at the WEC headquarters in the UK she formed a little club, called the Operation World Children's Club. Her manuscript was first called “Children's Operation World”. As Jill wrote the various sections, she shared the contents with the children. Jill finished the first children’s version of the book You can change the World, when she was already very ill, passing on later in the year. Albania, starting with the first letter of the alphabet, was one of the first countries to be prayed for by the Operation World Children's Club. The children’s version of the book received its name after one of the children shouted excitedly when Communism was given its death blow ‘Wow, we can change the World!

Rosemarie and I had to complete an assignment, called a ‘field study’ about the country we intended to go to. I had been giving talks about different aspects of South African life, but felt that I did not know enough about the culture and history of the country’s Indian population. What also played a role in my thinking was the strategy to be used back home to help recruit South African Indians as missionaries.  Thus I suggested that Rosemarie should study the politics, economy and related issues on South Africa, while I would make a study of the Indians of South Africa and their culture. This led me into looking at Hinduism and Islam, the two major Indian religions. During my field study I also discovered that Bo-Kaap, a residential area below Signal Hill, had become an Islamic stronghold. By this time we were preparing ourselves to come to Cape Town in January 1992.
Very soon after our arrival in the Mother City, we encountered a major problem that was associated with the Muslim community - drug addiction.  On the first Sunday that we attended the Living Hope Baptist Church, a couple there told us about their daughter who was addicted to drugs, and who had become a Muslim. We were immediately reminded of the successful Betel outreach of our mission agency to drug addicts in Spain, seeing this as a possible avenue of loving service to the local Muslim community.
            A few months later, the Lord himself seemed to lead us to the Cape Town Baptist Church using Vanessa, the 8-year-old daughter of Brett Viviers, one of the elders of the church and a Jewish background believer. Vanessa was terribly troubled by the calls from the minarets in the nearby mosques of Bo-Kaap. Her father suggested that she should start praying for the Muslims. The result of the child’s prayers was that a whole group from the church pitched up one Monday evening at a prayer meeting in Bo-Kaap that we had initiated after Rosemarie and I had been doing prayer walks there.

                            8.  Prayer influences on other religions and ideologies

A New Age onslaught countered
The late 1980s coincided with the office of Gordon Oliver as mayor of Cape Town. He proved to be a forceful agent of the New Age movement, fighting for the erection of a Peace Pole each on Table Mountain and at Rhodes Memorial. With its syncretistic-universalistic elements (the mixture of different religions, whereby people can get saved in any way), the claims of Jesus to be the unique Saviour of the World (John 4:42) were clearly challenged. The position of Jesus as Saviour was compromised in various other quarters, e.g. in the growing interfaith movement.
          1989 was a year of spiritual clashes. New Age made its ‘official’ entry with the 15 March 1989 article in the periodical Fair Lady under the caption ‘The Lure of the Occult’. In the article, which featured the telephone numbers of 18 practitioners of astrology and psychics, Ms Caroline Hurry asserted that ‘more and more people are turning to New Age practitioners for answers to questions about their life, money, health…’ The same year the country had its first ‘National Festival of Mind and Body’ in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban.
          Gordon Oliver, the mayor of Cape Town in the late 1980s, was a self-confessed New Ager.  However, the efforts to abuse his high office to promote the New Age ideology backfired. It spurred prayer networking in the Cape Peninsula. Stiff resistance was given by Christians, led by Youth with a Mission (YWAM), with Jamie Campbell and Brian Johnson the prominent personalities. At a New Age ritual on the slopes of Table Mountain at Deer Park, Vredehoek, a group of Christians challenged the New Agers prayerfully, refusing to leave when Gordon Oliver and his band attempted to drive them away.
          Vagrants destroyed the Peace Pole at Rhodes Memorial. The poles on Table Mountain and at the St George’s Mall also did not last long. The latter two were removed by Mr Alaistair Sutherland and Mr Charles Probert, after which they reported their deeds to the police.  In the subsequent court appearance of Sutherland, the magistrate dismissed the charge because the State could not establish the owner of the pole and in the case of Probert, no charge was laid against him.
          What was interesting in the response to the New Age onslaught was that an Afrikaner reformed clergyman, Dominee E. J. Sevenster, linked up with the Pentecostal Pastor Paul Daniel of the Lighthouse. For those days it was also significant for the unity of the body of Christ that a Coloured Christian from Mitchell’s Plain, Mr Norman Scheffers, had prayed at a gathering of 1000 Christians at the St George’s Mall ‘that this pole be removed and that the name of Jesus Christ will triumph.’

Prayer initiatives of the 1990s elsewhere that effected the Cape
In recent times fasting and praise have been prof­itably rediscovered.  In 1990 David Mniki - a believer from the Transkei - called the first national 40-day fast. It was quite localised, and not many people participated. During the fast God gave a scripture from Isaiah - ‘Can a nation be born in one day?’ This was the beginning of several more fasting initiatives. In 1992 the second 40-day fast took place. 
            1992 was the year during which mission leaders decided to call Christians worldwide to pray for Muslims during Ramadan. This was a natural follow-up to the call by Open Doors for 10 years of prayer for the Muslim world in 1990. Everybody still vividly remembered the spectacular result of the 7 years of prayer for the Soviet Union. The prayer initiative was called Ramadan, a 30-day Muslim prayer focus.  A little booklet was printed and distributed around the globe with information on different issues relating to Islam.

Prayer as part of the evangelistic outreach at the Cape
Prayer had been used quite substantially in the outreach to Cape Muslims, though not nearly sufficiently to make an impact spiritually. Under the leadership of the German missionary Gerhard Nehls, the founder of Life Challenge, his team had people praying while co-workers visited Muslim homes. In other cases, groups prayed before they would go on outreach. Thus, in the mid 1980s, his German missionary colleague Walter Gschwandtner had his group praying in the home of the Abrahams family in Bo-Kaap, where the Muslim head of the home came to faith in Jesus as his Lord just before he died in 1983. The knowledge of the Bo-Kaap prayer meetings was almost went lost when the Gschwandtner family left for Kenya.
            As a result of prayer walking in 1992, the mishap was discovered. Thereafter the Bo-Kaap prayer meeting in Wale Street was resumed. At one of these meetings, Achmed Kariem, a convert from Islam, suggested a lunchtime prayer meeting on Fridays while Muslims attend their mosque services. Such prayer events started in the Shepherd’s Watch, a little church hall at 98 Shortmarket Street near Riebeeck Square in September 1992. When the building was sold a few years later, the event switched to the Koffiekamer, (The venue was used by Straatwerk for their ministry to vagrants, street children, and to certain nightclubs over the weekends.)  In addition to prayers for a spiritual breakthrough in the area, a foundation for many evangelistic initiatives was laid at the Friday lunch hour prayer meetings. The suggestion, to have prayer groups all over the Peninsula, so that the spiritual eyes of Muslims might be opened to Jesus as the Saviour of the World and as the Son of God, never really took off. Here and there one started and petered out again. The only prayer meetings that kept functioning over the years was the one in Wale Street on every first Monday of the month and the Friday lunch hour prayer meetings which started at the Shepherd’s Watch in September 1992, and which continued in the Koffiekamer of Straatwerk at 108 Bree Street.

Run-up to Transformation events
The prayer group targeted the transformation of Bo-Kaap, the residential area that had become an Islamic stronghold through apartheid legislation. Over a period of more than a decade, the intercessors experienced special answers to prayer. Yet, in the natural, it appeared as though Islam was still making great strides, for instance through a proliferation of mosques in residential areas that had formerly been zoned as ‘White’.
          At the prayer meeting itself, Daphne Davids, a member of the Cape Town Baptist church and also a Bo-Kaap resident, was a regular from the outset. When Cecilia Abrahams encountered hearing problems after a few years, the Monday meeting was relocated to Daphne’s home across the road, which became a monthly event. There it continues to this day.  Prayers at Rhodes Memorial continued for some time under the leadership of Reverend Richard Mitchell.  On the other side of the spiritual spectrum, Satanists continued to use the same heights for their rituals.
          Locally the prayer fort was also held by the monthly Prayer Concert, first at the S.A. Gestig and later for some years in Mowbray at the Presbyterian Church. The next big combined move by Christians revolved around the Jesus Marches.  In 1994 quite a few of the marches were organised all over the Peninsula and the Western Cape. 
          It was really significant for the Cape Town Metropolis in April 1997 when churches across the city and from almost every denomination joined hands for a big Gospel campaign at the Newlands Cricket Stadium with Franklin Graham, the son of the renowned evangelist Billy Graham.  Pastor Walter Ackerman from the Docks Mission Church in Lentegeur and Pastor Elijah Klaassen from a Pentecostal church in Gugulethu/ Crossroads, worked tirelessly to enlist people from the ‘Coloured’ and Black churches respectively for this event. Transport from the townships was provided free of charge. This thus became the model for the Transformation stadium events of the new millennium.

An impact on (Cape) Jewry
The world was stunned in 1948 when the State of Israel was formed. Suddenly it was realised that what was regarded as one of the most unlikely biblical prophesies, was actually being fulfilled. Jews started planning to return to Israel as never before. Cape Town also played a role in a new turning to the Old Testament when the first heart transplant world-wide was performed on Louis Washkansky, a Jew, on 3 December 1967. The prophecy of Jeremiah that the Almighty wants to substitute the hearts of stone with a heart of flesh to the repentant, received a new actuality in evangelism. The world-wide acknowledgement by the group Jews of Jesus as their Messiah suddenly became more of a possibility. Their assertive ways were however not appreciated by their rank and file fellow Jews.
          The Bo-Kaap prayer meeting in the Abrahams’ home in Wale Street was later changed to a monthly meeting, making room for a prayer event where intercession for the Middle East was the focus. At the new monthly meeting - at our home in Vredehoek - we also prayed for the Jews, those in Israel as well as those in Cape Town. The pivot of the Jewish part of the prayer meeting was Elizabeth Robertson, whom God used to stir the Jews of Sea Point in 1990. Elizabeth had been confronted at that time with a very difficult choice when she was about to convert to Judaism, in preparation for her marriage to an Israeli national. Her autobiography The Choice impacted Cape Jewry when it was published in 2003. In the same year it was read on the programme Story Teller via the Cape Community FM radio channel. As one of our regulars, she was also a link to Beth Ariel, a fellowship with Messianic believers in Sea Point.

Breaking new ground through prayer
Preparations for the start of a missionary prayer meeting progressed well in the City Mission congregation of the township Hanover Park in the second quarter of 1992. Once per month their weekly prayer meetings received a missionary focus, allowing the author to come and share there regularly. Norman Barnes, a Muslim background believer and a former gangster drug addict, was the leader of the prayer group. It was thus quite easy to share with them the burden of praying for Muslims, for gangsters and drug addicts.
        A few months later Hanover Park experienced the power of prayer in a special way. A committed police sergeant called in the help of the local churches in a last-ditch effort because the police could not cope anymore with the crime situation. Operation Hanover Park was formed. The initiative, with prayer by believers from different church backgrounds as its main component, included a ministry directed specially at gangsters. Instead of shooting at each other, rival gangs competed in play football matches. Jesus-centred children’s clubs were formed in an effort to make sure that the problem of gangsterism would be tackled at the root, an effort to break the cycle of youngsters getting used to a life of vice.
          The Saturday afternoon missionary prayer meeting fused into the monthly prayer event of Operation Hanover Park towards the end of 1992. The vision to pray for missionaries called from their residential area was gladly taken on board. The idea was completely new to the praying believers, but the Lord soon started answering the prayers. Within three months, the area had changed significantly. An elderly resident who had been in the township for many years, testified that Christmas 1992 was the most peaceful he had experienced there. Furthermore, the Lansdowne/Hanover Park/Manenberg area would be exporting quite a number of missionaries within a few years. 
        Operation Hanover Park was on the verge of achieving an early version of community transformation at the beginning of 1993 when a leadership tussle stifled the promising movement. Soon thereafter the combined prayer effort fizzled out. Gang-related crime spiralled once again. Hanover Park could have become an example to the rest of the country to show what can be done if local believers stand together in prayer perseveringly. We must learn from our mistakes!

A national prayer network started
In 1993 Mostert formally started a national prayer network known as NUPSA (the Network for United Prayer in Southern Africa).  That year also saw the first teams praying through information gained from serious research. Teams travelled from Kimberley to Grahamstown and George, to pray through issues concerning Cecil John Rhodes and Freemasonry. This had a major influence in the continent, exposing much of the damage done to society through Freemasonry.  During 1993 South Africa also started to participate in the Pray through the Window initiative, launched internationally by the AD 2000 prayer track. 
            At least just as great an impact on the country as a whole was the initiatives of African Enterprise (AE) during the transition years from 1991 to 1994.  In April 1993 AE launched a two-year chain of intercessory prayer to go non-stop day and night for two years. Then there was the project ‘From Africa with Love’ when small teams went and visited the major political groupings and leaders to pray with them and to pastor them where appropriate.  Then there were the Kolobe Lodge Dialogue weekends at a game lodge north of Pretoria with that name, during which politicians from the far left to the far right were invited to get to know each other informally. This was thus a variation of the Koinonia concept which proved so effective to undermine apartheid. Along with the other prayer initiatives at this time, South Africa’s political leaders of all ideological shades became surely the most prayed for political leaders anywhere.

                                    9. Taking back territory from the enemy

The small Assemblies of God Church fellowship of Woodstock had early morning prayer meetings on weekdays from 1994, starting at 5 a.m. The indifference of churches with regard to evangelistic outreach was a scourge all around the Peninsula. The situation in Woodstock and Salt River was of the worst in this regard. The two suburbs had become predominantly Islamic within a few years.
            Pastor Graham Gernetzky, senior minister of the Cape Town Baptist Church organised a missions week with students of the Baptist Theological Seminary in March 1994. I was teaching at this occasion along with Bobby Maynard, who was linked to Veritas College, which was still very much in its embryonic stage. (In later years, the Correspondence Bible College which started at the Cape, would have a worldwide effect, notably in Egypt among Coptic Christians.) Reverend Gernetsky reacted positively to the suggestion to get engaged in prayer warfare with the students also in Woodstock. This would be tantamount to an attempt to take back what Satan had stolen through drug abuse, prostitution and gangsterism.
          During a prayer walk by the students - which formed part of the missions week - a local Woodstock inhabitant mentioned Pastor William Tait and his fellowship. This led to contact with the Assemblies of God congregation there. When Pastor Tait started off as a pastor of the Woodstock Assemblies of God in 1989, that suburb was becoming completely Islamic, albeit not in a way which Muslims were proud of. Christians were leaving the sinking ship of Woodstock as gangsterism and prostitution took the area by storm. It had become the drug centre of the metropolis.
          The missions week was also the run-up to closer co-operation between the Assemblies of God fellowship and the small Baptist Church that had no pastor at that time. The notorious suburb hereafter slowly changed its religious complexion towards the end of the decade. (The hub of drug peddling and prostitution moved to more lucrative areas for their respective trades.) Pastor Tait and his church were ably assisted by the tiny local Baptist Church under the inspiring and pioneering new minister Edgar Davids.

The Face of Woodstock changes
The two buildings where these churches congregate now, visibly demonstrated the need for change in the area. Both buildings had become quite dilapidated by 1995. The Baptist Church bought the ruin of the old Aberdeen Street Dutch Reformed Church, which they started to restore with financial and practical aid from North Carolina believers in the USA.  Among the participants, there were American pensioners who came over to help with the restoration. The Woodstock Presbyterian Church found it difficult to survive in that suburb. Almost all their members had either left the area or passed on. Nevertheless, almost before our eyes we now saw God starting to use these two churches gradually changing the face of the suburb. The Fountain of Joy Assemblies of God rented the dilapidated building from the Presbyterians fromally from 1997. They had already started having their fellowship services in this building.
            The restored churches, respectively in Clyde and Aberdeen Streets, were the shame of local Christianity a mere decade ago. They hereafter stood there as a visible testimony to God’s renewal power in that suburb. We prayed that something similar would happen in the spiritual realm.
          The Lord was orchestrating things in his own sovereign way. William Tait, the pastor of the small Assemblies of God Church, had the vision to start early morning prayer meetings in the early 1990s. Soon after Edgar Davids took office in 1995 at the Baptist Church, the two churches organised a combined evangelistic campaign in the Woodstock Town Hall. The close cooperation between the two churches was seriously impeded when Pastor Edgar Davids died in March 1998 after his body’s rejection of a transplanted kidney. 

            Our involvement in the adjacent suburbs of Walmer Estate and Salt River started with prayer walking. In the latter instance it became the prelude to a children’s club that we commenced in 1995 with Marika Pretorius, a SIM Life Challenge missionary colleague, after our return from Europe. In our absence she did further spadework with a holiday club in Salt River.
Some compassionate Cape Christian outreaches of the 1990s
The different ministries of compassion in the Cape, like those of the Cape Town City Mission, Alcoholics Victorious, The Ark in Westlake (now in Faure), Total Transformation and Trailblazers all had people from a wide spectrum of religious persuasions going through their ranks at one stage or another. Various agencies have been reaching out in love to street children, like Youth with a Mission (YWAM). 
          In Salt River Hudson McComb was moved by compassion for street youths, starting Beth Uriel, an institution at which believers would care for underprivileged young people. In the City Bowl a church related ministry for street children called Homestead was started as one of the first of its kind, soon followed by Ons plek, a similar accommodation for girls.        A ministers’ fraternal in Observatory and Mowbray initiated a project for the homeless called Loaves and Fishes. The Haven was another church-initiated ministry to the homeless. In this case it was later taken over by the City Council, with daughter institutions at new venues. The work of Straatwerk in night clubs and the work among French-speaking foreigners received aid from abroad when Freddie Kammies and his German wife Doris, who had worked among street children in Toronto (Canada) under the auspices of Operation Mobilization (OM), joined the team of Worldwide Evangelization for Christ (WEC) in Cape Town at the end of 1997. Freddie Kammies hails from Q’town, a township in the Athlone area. The couple formally linked up with Straatwerk, the pioneering outreach effort of the Dutch Reformed Church to nightclubs, prostitutes and homosexuals. Prostitution has also become a major problem amongst the Cape Muslim population, most notably in Woodstock and Hanover Park, but also affecting previously protected communities like Bo-Kaap. Christians have challenged some of these prostitutes. One such group was led by Marge Ballin, who was linked to YWAM. More outreach to prostitutes took place under the ministry of Madri Bruwer of Straatwerk.
            Pastor Willie Martheze, a qualified welder from Mitchells Plain, was still a vagrant when he was initially ministered to. Humorously he would recollect how he had been such a good-for-nothing alcoholic that his own mother sent the police and the gangsters after him. ‘But Jesus found me first!’, he said. He was radically changed by the Gospel after attending an evangelistic service on the Grand Parade in February 1974, with the Scottish missionary Pastor Gay as the preacher. Soon thereafter he got a job at the Arthur’s Seat Hotel in Sea Point. The prayerful ministry of Pastor Gay in District Six challenged the former bergie (vagrant) to attend an evening course at the Bethel Bible School in Crawford. Obedient to God’s voice when he saw a vagrant, Pastor Willie Martheze followed a call to minister fulltime to homeless people, with the intention of bringing Gospel healing to these people. One of the aims was to empower them to return to the homes they had left.
            The commencement of the ministry of compassion to the children who associated themselves with the Hard Livings gang in Tafelsig, Mitchells Plain, looked promising.  Ayesha Hunter, a Muslim background believer, was bravely presenting the Life Issues programme via Radio CCFM.  At this time she was also running a soup kitchen for the children of the notorious gang. She gave the group a new name, using the same first two letters of the gang - Heaven’s Little Kids - a name of which they were quite proud. Glen Khan, a drug lord, sponsored the project anonymously while he was being challenged and ministered to. He finally accepted Jesus as his Saviour, and was assassinated shortly thereafter. The benevolent ministry ceased with his assassination in April 1999.

The start of a ministry to AIDS/HIV patients
At a time when AIDS was still being mentioned in a hush, there was no competition in compassionate outreach to the hapless sufferers. A ministry with close links to the Cape Town City Mission started when Val Kadalie, a trained nurse, had a deep concern for young people who contracted sexually transmitted diseases (STD’s). Back in the apartheid years, she was invited to speak to many churches and schools to warn young people about the dangers of promiscuity and to encourage them to abstain from pre-marital sex. After Ms Kadalie became the matron of the G.H. Starke Centre in Hanover Park, the institution also started functioning as a hospice for terminal patients. She warned her staff in the late 1980s that they might soon have to treat AIDS patients, but her colleagues were not yet ready for that.
            The crunch came when she and her husband Charles were approached to take care of a little 4-year old boy, Jason, who was HIV positive. When Charles put the phone down at the electric power plant in Athlone where he worked, he sensed that God was challenging them as a couple to practise what they preached. Jason was the first of four children they cared for in succession, until all but one died from AIDS.  In the process Val became a pioneer fighter for AIDS awareness throughout the country, responding to calls from churches and groups of the most diverse backgrounds.
          Nazareth House, a Roman Catholic institution in the City Bowl, performed the same compassionate work during this period, as the occurrence of HIV-positive babies started to increase. At the building in Vredehoek where the Roman Catholics had already started caring for orphaned children and destitute elderly in 1888, they pioneered with the care of HIV-positive/AIDS babies in 1992, possibly the first outreach of this nature in South Africa. The Dutch YWAM missionary couple, Toby and Aukje Brouwer, after their successful pioneering ministry amongst street children called Beautiful Gate, soon took on the care of AIDS babies. In 1999 they started to care for such little ones with government aid in Crossroads, a Black township. Since then, their ministry has expanded even to neighbouring countries. On 8 December 2004 a new centre was opened in Lower Crossroads. Broken lives were restored and in the case of at least one young man, a desire was inculcated to enter missionary work.
            In the meantime HIV/AIDS became a pandemic. The spread of the disease was especially dramatic in prisons where inmates infected almost all newcomers. This challenge has not yet been taken up rigorously. Nevertheless, gangsters were ministered to and quite a few made tentative steps to become followers of Jesus while in prison.
                        10. Changed Gangsters in the transformation process

Gangsters and Drug Addicts changed
God intervened sovereignly when gangsters and drug addicts were changed in answer to prayer. Decades ago Nicky Cruz received worldwide fame through his conversion under the ministry of David Wilkerson and his Teen Challenge team. The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association produced a winner in the filming of The Cross and the Switchblade. The ministries among gangsters and drug addicts by people like Jackie Pullinger in Hong Kong and the Betel ministry of Elliot Tepper in Spain became part of the move of God’s Spirit into the 1990s.

Conversions amongst Cape gangsters     
Cape Town had its own version of gangsters changed - albeit on a much less spectacular scale. Because James Valentine had been a gangster, his conversion in 1957 created quite a stir, and consequently a lot of interest. Soon he was a celebrated preacher on the Grand Parade. Subsequently he became a dynamic leader of the Assemblies of God Church. Andy Lamb is another pastor with a similar background who preached - in his own words - ‘on almost every street corner of District Six’ and on many a train. The most famous of all from this category is possibly Pastor Eddie Edson, a previous pastor of the Shekinah Tabernacle which is linked to the Full gospel denomination. He had been involved in the Woodstock gangster activities and became converted under Pastor Andy Lamb’s ministry. As the minister of the ‘Sowers of the Word’ Church of Lansdowne, Pastor Lamb was very much involved in the prayer drives and meetings of intercessors, which met at his church once a month in 1996 and in the planting of churches. He became one of the most consistent movers of the prayer movement at the Cape in the 1990s.
In the second half of 1992, the criminality and violence in the township of Hanover Park got completely out of hand, but the Lord raised up praying people. In answer to these prayers, police sergeant Everett Crowe approached the churches about the situation in the township. Pastor Jonathan Matthews of the Blomvlei Baptist Church in Lansdowne played a big role in the start of Operation Hanover Park. Prayer by believers from different churches had a huge impact on this operation. A tract written by Dean Ramjoomia, a converted Muslim, impacted Ivan Walldeck, a gangster from the area. Ramjoomia had been a PAC (Pan African Congress) anti-apartheid activist before his conversion in 1983. After literally running away from Gospel preachers in trains, he was visited by the risen Lord walking through a closed door. Operation Hanover Park, under whose auspices Dean Ramjoomia operated, was organised as a combined church effort to fight crime in the township after the police had given up hope.
          Ramjoomia and his wife Susan felt themselves led to minister to different gangs as part of this initiative. Ramjoomia had been embittered as a boy by police maltreatment, after having used a ‘Whites only’ toilet. Formerly a Muslim, he was supernaturally ministered to by the Holy Spirit, and thereafter discipled by Pastor Alfie Fabe from the City Mission.  In 1999 he entered Bible School with the intention of ministering to drug addicts and gangsters on a full-time basis. Ramjoomia started minisgering at the Haven, a ministry to the homeless in 2004.
            Edson Edson would effect the Mother City in a big way in the 1990s. He became a pastor of the Full Gospel Church. The Shekinah Tabernacle in Mitchells Plain was the venue from where prayer drives were to be launched in the mid-1990s. Pastor Eddie Edson also became the driving force for both the pastors and pastors’ wives monthly prayer meetings, and the city-wide prayer events that pioneered the Transformation of Cape Town in the new millennium. Eric Hofmeyer, a former gang leader, became a pastor.  He ministered to many a gangster in the infamous Pollsmoor prison, including Sollie Staggie, a lesser-known brother of the infamous twins Rashied and Rashaad. He had the joy of discipling many of these gangsters who committed their lives to the Lord.
Trials in transition
When President F.W. de Klerk announced a Whites-only election on 20 February 1992, it was still touch and go which direction the country would go. The possibility of unprecedented civil war could definitely not be discounted. The Whites were asked to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to the question: ‘Do you support continuation of the reform process which the State President began on February 2, 1990 and which is aimed at a new constitution?’
          The success of the national cricket team at the World Cup tournament in Australia at that time possibly influenced the vote decisively. A ‘no’ vote would most certainly not only have ushered in civil war, but it would also have sent the country back into the sporting wilderness. The latter was for many in the sports loving country just as ghastly to contemplate! (This was a dictum coined by Mr B.J. Vorster, a previous Prime Minister.)  With a resounding ‘yes’ - 68% - from all corners of the country, Mr de Klerk was given a mandate on 17 March 1992 to negotiate a new constitution with the likes of Nelson Mandela.
          Much of the goodwill of these promising beginnings seemed to evaporate after 1992, during the transition to democratic government. In Kwazulu, a simmering condition of civil war had been prevailing for years. The tension between ANC (African National Congress) followers and those of the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) was just waiting for the final igniting of the powder keg. Over the Easter weekend of 1993, the country seemed to have been pushed over the precipice of major racial conflict. On 10 April 1993 the news reverberated throughout the country that the outspoken communist Chris Hani, who had been touted for a top position in a possible ANC-led government, had been assassinated. The fact that a white woman provided information leading to the prompt arrest of the alleged perpetrators, two right-wing activists, served to lower the political temperature momentarily, but things remained extremely tense.
The death of Chris Hani helped to get a date set for elections, but by July 1993 the country was still clearly heading for the precipice of civil war.  In different parts of the Peninsula, Christians from different denominational backgrounds came together for prayer, although this was still mainly occurring within the racial confines. In fact, God had to use the brutal attack of believers in a Capetonian sanctuary to get the Church in South Africa praying fervently. The massacre on 25 July 1993 at the St James Church of Kenilworth caused a temporary brake on the escalation of violence that was threatening to push the country over the precipice - a civil war of enormous dimensions. The event inspired unprecedented prayer all around the country and around the world, bringing home the seriousness of terrorism that would not even stop at sacred places. The attack on the St James Church brought about a new sense of urgency for Christians to leave their comfort zones.

Sovereign moves of God’s Spirit
A third consecutive 40-day fast – the first of the three started on 2 January 1994 - coincided with preparations for the general elections. Before this, the concrete fear of civil war inspired prayer meetings across the racial divide. Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Methodist Bishop Stanley Mogoba convened a meeting between Dr Nelson Mandela and Dr Mangosuthu Buthelezi to try to resolve the deadlock posed by Inkatha Freedom Party’s threat to boycott the elections.
Africa Enterprise enlisted prayer assistance from all over the world in 1993.  Few other countries responded like Kenya and Nigeria. Foreign missionaries were seriously considering leaving South Africa because of the increase in violence. In a special move of God’s Spirit, Pastor Willy Oyegun from Nigeria and a group of prayer warriors from that country were led to come and pray in South Africa in February 1994. It was touch and go, or they would have been sent back from Johannesburg International Airport without accomplishing anything. God intervened sovereignly. Willy Oyegun became God’s choice instrument for healing and reconciliation at the Cape in the post-apartheid era. In East Africa God laid on the heart of many a Kenyan to pray for the country as it was heading for the general elections on 27 April 1994.
         In the frantic months leading to April 1994, Nelson Mandela engaged in attempts to placate extremist groups. His efforts seemed futile. On the one hand the ANC entered into negotiations with General Constand Viljoen, the former head of the South African Defence Force for the establishment of a Volkstaat, in which Afrikaans religion, culture and language would be preserved. On the other hand, the ANC took quite a hard line with Dr Mangusuthu Buthelezi, the leader of the Inkatha Freedom Front, who definitely appeared no less stubborn.      
          The ANC attempt to diminish the power of regional governments could have led to the much feared civil war when Viljoen decided to move into Boputhatswana, one of the former homelands with 4,000 troops. Nominally, this intervention was projected as an effort to preserve the independence of an ally; it would have given his army a base into which Viljoen and his army could move much of their sophisticated equipment. From there they would have been able to challenge a new ANC-led government. Viljoen’s well-disciplined forces were however joined by a party from the extreme rightwing Afrikaanse Weerstandsbeweging, which was shooting Blacks for the fun of it. This led to a mutiny in the Boputhatswana Army. Almost immediately hereafter on 16 March 1994, Viljoen broke with the link to Dr Mangusuthu Buthelezi via the Freedom Alliance. He formed his own political party, the Freedom Front, agreeing to participate in the elections. It would probably not be preposterous to suggest that this was the result of the many prayers offered in various places at this time, postponing the feared civil war for the moment at least.
                                                 11. On the brink of Civil War

God used Rev Michael Cassidy and his Africa Enterprise team to get a massive prayer effort underway by Christians all over the world, along with the skills of Kenyan Professor Washington Okumu, a committed Christian. God furthermore clearly called a police officer, Colonel Johan Botha, to recruit prayer warriors. The press took up his story, reporting on how God supernaturally came to him in a vision. An angel stood before him on 23 March 1994 with the message: „I want South Africa on its knees in prayer”. A national prayer day was announced for 6 April 1994 - a national holiday at that time called Founder’s Day. The country was very close to a civil war, which surely could have sent many missionaries fleeing in all haste just before or after the elections in 1994.

Divine Intervention
Two reputable negotiators were brought in, along with the more or less internationally unknown Professor Okumu. Lord Carrington was a former British Foreign Minister, who had brokered an accord for Zimbabwe in Lancaster House in London in 1980. Dr Henry Kissinger, a former US Secretary of State, headed off a major crisis in the Middle East through his shuttle diplomacy in the 1970s. The group however had great difficulty in attempting to induce Inkatha, the predominantly Zulu party led by Dr Mangusuthu Buthelezi, to participate in the elections.  On 13 April 1994 - only two weeks before the scheduled elections - the two prominent gentlemen from the UK and the USA left the country, having acknowledged their failure to achieve a settlement. The scene was set for the outbreak of civil war of unprecedented proportions. Journalists flew in from all over the world to witness and record the carnage that was expected to follow the elections.
            Professor Okumu heeded Michael Cassidy’s request to stay behind when his prominent Western colleagues left.  After Okumu had rushed by taxi to meet Dr Buthulezi on 15 April at the Lanseria Airport to explain a new proposal to be presented to the Zulu King, he could just see the machine taking off. Divine intervention occurred when the aircraft returned. Some strange navigational reading caused the pilot to return to the airport. (Afterwards no fault was discovered with the machine). God indeed had to intervene supernaturally to get the machine, in which Dr Mangusuthu Buthelezi was sitting, to return to the airport where Okumu had already thought to have missed him.
Millions of ballot papers had already been printed. Hurriedly a similar number of stickers was prepared to be attached to the ballot papers to give the new South African electorate the added option to vote for the Inkatha Freedom Party.
It was very fitting that God used Okumu, a Kenyan professor, to broker the accord with the IFP (Inkatha Freedom Party) and the Zulu King, a move that literally steered the country away from the precipice at the 11th hour. Many Kenyans had been praying for South Africa in its period of crisis. They - as did Dr Mangusuthu Buthulezi and thousands of South Africans - gave God all the honour for divinely guiding the country to an unprecedented four days of peaceful revolution, as the election process was dubbed.
           In answer to the prayers of millions, God brought about the miracle elections that might have gone awry, if Satan had his way. It was clear that it was primarily not the military actions or the boycotts, which toppled apartheid. It was God’s sovereign work. The devil must have worked overtime almost to the last minute to counter God’s plans of redemption for the country. In the wake of so much positive publicity to the honour of God, Satan was ‘honour-bound’ to hit back with a vengeance.

The Devil’s Reply
When the ANC came to power in 1994, all religions were given equal status. Increasingly, occult elements became fashionable. Witchcraft was accepted by many uncritically, and some people regarded Satanism as just another religion. It was uncritically taken on board that people could be ‘sacrificed’ by Satanists,. The poor argument was: so many are also killed in political and other forms of violence, so what! A spokesman for the South African Council of Churches  (SACC) even rationalised the issue so much as to state that Satanism is a matter of personal conscience. The pervasively negative influence of television - with the poisoning of young minds - proceeded unchecked; violence, extra-marital and same-sex relationships were depicted in many films as ‘normal’, thus encouraging promiscuity.
Already on 11 May 1994 - at the inauguration of the new President, Nelson Mandela - the stage was set for anti-evangelical government. The use of a praise singer might have looked very African, but New Age notions and ancestral worship were thus simultaneously ushered in. It was not surprising at all when the new government made it no secret that they wanted secular rule to substitute the racist apartheid style of the former regime.  But the government possibly did not bargain with the dramatic increase of Satanism in certain areas.
          A fourth 40-day fast was organised in conjunction with an international initiative called A Day to Change the World. Thousands of people participated in this fast, which culminated in Jesus Marches all over the country on 24 June 1994.
         Although much of the mutual distrust was temporarily overcome, the country more or less lapsed back into its traditional racial and denominational divisions. Grigg’s recipe was still very appropriate: If there is not significant unity, the first step is to bring together the believers in prayer or in renewal and teaching until there is reconciliation and brokenness.
            The church universal would do well to heed Patrick Johnstone’s advice: ‘Courses on prayer are to be incorporated into required curricula of Christian seminaries, colleges and schools.’ Rarely found prayer courses are often only an elective. A change here could deeply affect the Church and the progress of world evangelization.

Prayer requested for the new Secular government
Next to many positives – notably in the supply of housing, electricity and water - the new secular government unwittingly walked right into Satan’s trap in their effort to appear liberal. Nelson Mandela’s generosity and love for children probably became too well known when his parties for street children were televised. Be it as it may, there was a significant increase in children who found it much easier to leave their homes for very dubious reasons.
In the opinion of many people the new government appeared to be bending over backwards to accommodate sexual immorality. The legalization of abortion by the new regime was not surprising because in the run-up to the 1994 elections, the ANC had already envisaged that as future policy.
Whereas the racist remnants of the previous era rightly had to be eradicated, the new government was possibly not aware that they were opening gates of evil. Human rights became the premise on which laws were liberalised almost indiscriminately. Obviously with the best intensions, President Nelson Mandela granted amnesty to many criminals. However, some of those released prisoners continued their criminality as soon as they were discharged. 
One of the first liberal new laws was the possibility of ‘easy bail’. Criminals went for the gap. Drug lords had no problem coughing up the bail money, and hardened criminals usually had easy access to cash. The new inexperienced government appeared to allow all sorts of criminality to spiral out of control.
Crime increased and especially drug trafficking spiralled! The influx of refugees – many of them for economic reasons - caused xenophobia, as many Blacks saw them as a threat and competition to the already tight employment market. This drove many of the expatriates to the lucrative drug trade, where criminal Nigerians were soon on hand to take control in mafia operations.  A situation developed by the end of the century that could only be countered with spiritual warfare on a national scale.  A divine response followed when prayer warriors from different communities were raised and who came forward.

The link to the countrywide prayer movement
A Cape link to the countrywide prayer movement had been forged in October 1994 via Jan Hanekom, a giant of the South African mission scene, who was linked to the Hofmeyr Centre in Stellenbosch. Local Christians joined Bennie Mostert in a drive to Macassar. Under Mostert’s leadership they prayed at the shrine of Sheikh Yusuf, the generally acknowledged founder of Islam at the Cape.
          Something significant happened that day in October 1994. The prayer at SheikhYusuf’s shrine probably signalled a breakthrough in the spiritual realm. Here and there individual Christians started showing an interest in praying for Muslims, although the churches in general remained indifferent.   
          A new brand of convert from Islam emerged, people who were bold and willing to suffer ostracism and persecution for their faith in Jesus Christ. A case in point is Esmé Orrie. She was very fearful and suspicious for a long time after her conversion in July 1992.  However, since 1994 she has testified boldly in many a church and on the radio. On 10 March 2000, listeners to the CCFM Christian radio station were invited to react telephonically to the programme God Changes Lives when she shared her testimony. Johaar Viljoen, a former Imam, shared his conversion story in many a church fearlessly in spite of threats.

Soon hereafter, the connection to the countrywide prayer movement was strengthened. Gerda Leithgöb, who had introduced the use of research for prayer in South Africa, was invited as the guest speaker for a prayer seminar in Rylands Estate in January 1995 that focused on Islam.
  12. New Challenges from Gangsterism and Islam

Group Areas Legislation aggravates gangsterism
The dislocation of the Cape Flats communities because of the Group Areas Act in the 1960s and 1970s caused a major problem. As people were uprooted from stable residential areas, gangsterism (which had already taken root in District Six), grew almost exponentially in the new townships.
          A case in point is the well-known Staggie twins. They were forced to move from the respectable suburb Diep River to the Cape Flats township of Manenberg in 1971. Over the years, the Staggies became mighty drug lords with international links. During the 1980s the apartheid regime covertly assisted gangsters. Chris Ferndale, who can be regarded as an expert on gang affairs, referred to an ‘alliance’ between gangsters and the police (The Cape Argus, 15 August 1996). Gangs would report on clandestine anti-apartheid operations, with the understanding that the police would turn a blind eye to their illegal activities.  By the 1990s the situation resembled anarchy in many a local township because of this arrangement.

The Response of the churches and Missions to Gang-related Activities 
The question was: How long would the churches sit idly by and endure the senseless killings and crime? The occasional pious talk, calling for an end to the violence, was not good enough.
          Fortunately there were some exceptions to the rule of indifference and lethargy. The prayerful Pastor Alfred West - who had to wait for twenty five years to marry his (‘Coloured’) sweetheart Jessica because of the country’s racial laws - was a brave White evangelist. He was mightily used by God to stem the tide of gangsterism, notably in Bonteheuwel in the 1980s. In his open-air campaigns he confronted the shebeen owners (illegal alcohol peddlers, operating from their homes) and dagga (cannabis) smokers. A special spin-off of his work was a missionary prayer fellowship, to which amongst others the missionary Walter Gschwandter (SIM Life Challenge) came from time to time. This resulted in quite a few of Pastor West’s group getting trained in Muslim Evangelism and becoming involved in regular weekly outreach. One of his protégées was Percy Jeptha, a former gangster, who later became a pastor. Peter Barnes, a young man from the fellowship, went on to plant mission-minded churches in the Transkei that have it as their vision to send missionaries to other African countries. Vincent Alexander was a young man who later became a pastor of a vibrant church in the area. Godfrey Martin, another product from the blessed ministry of Pastor Alfred West, started a fellowship in Stellenbosch, which became very much the driving force of Free to Serve, a fairly new Cape-based mission agency that was started in 1994. The agency organises the support base for two missionaries abroad, apart from supporting quite a few Indian evangelists in their home country.
          In recent years a few gangsters from Islamic background became followers of Jesus. Until the early 1990s there was no targeted endeavour to reach the gangsters with the Gospel. Some of them came under the sound of the Gospel at the occasional open-air service.
          Dicky Lewis, who became a missionary with AEF (Africa Evangelical Fellowship) in 1995, grew up among many of the gang leaders. Through his involvement in community structures, Lewis won the trust of many a gangster and drug lord.
          Pastor Arthur Johnson was another exception to the sad rule. One of the local ministers of Hanover Park who had been co-operating in the co-ordinated church operation in 1992 but who kept on reaching out in love to gangsters.

Prayer Sequels
The Lord used the Messianic prophecy of Isaiah 60 as part of a devotional in a Friday lunch hour prayer meeting at the Shepherd’s Watch to start calling Gill Knaggs into the mission to the Muslim World. She was attending the prayer meeting on a one-off basis. This set her in motion to pray about getting involved in full-time missionary work.  
            Gill hereafter helped to translate (from Afrikaans) and edit the testimony booklet Search for Truth. She also hosted a prayer group for Muslims at her home for quite a number of years. When Cape Community FM (CCFM) started with a radio programme aimed at Muslims in 1998, she was on hand for the writing of scripts, something she continued to do for many years, also after her marriage.
          As a result of the 1994 Jesus Marches some Cape churches came to know the missionary work of WEC International better. One of these churches was the Logos Christelijke Kerk in Bellville. Not only did this church become a major recipient of the Ramadan booklet, but Freddy van Dyk, a leader of the church who worked at the City Council, joined the Friday lunchtime prayer meeting at the Shepherd’s Watch. This led to some members of the prayer group eventually taking a course in pastoral clinical counselling by Dr Henry Dwyer in the second quarter of 1996. This in turn resulted in a Muslim Evangelism course at St James Church in Kenilworth.

          Another sequel to the Friday lunchtime prayer meetings was the resumption of language classes at the Cape Town Baptist Church, even though these lessons differed greatly from classes held before 1999. It all started with a local believer attending the prayer meetings and pointing to French-speaking traders from West Africa in the Mother City, many who were invariably Muslim. „Who would bring the Gospel to them?” was the challenge.
          At that stage Louis Pasques, who had become the senior pastor of the Cape Town Baptist Church, was attending the lunchtime prayer meetings fairly regularly.  As one of the few born-again French speakers of the Mother City at the time, he was in this way prepared for the challenge posed by refugees from Zaire and the Republic of Congo, who came to his church for some sort of aid. When Gildas Paka, a Congolese teenager, pitched up at the church in 1996, the Pasques family opened their home to him. One thing led to the other until Alan Kay, the church’s administrator, finally adopted Gildas. Soon the Cape Town Baptist Church became a home to refugees from many African countries. The need for fluency in English - in order to help them obtain employment - inspired the offer of free English lessons to many of these refugees. This led to the resumption of English language classes at the church, this time not as a service to foreign students, but to refugees.

A Reply to New Challenges from Islam
Muslims were perceived as receiving preferential treatment from the new government. This boosted the religion at the Cape substantially. On the other hand, conversions from Islam to a living faith in Jesus Christ increased significantly in South Africa after Ramadan 1995. The catalyst was definitely an increase in prayer, stimulated by Bennie Mostert through NUPSA (Network of United Prayer in Southern Africa), and Gerda Leithgöb from Herald Ministries A link to the Cape Flats township intercessors existed via Mercia and Vincent Pregnalato and their fellowship in Greenhaven. The fellowship around this couple held the fort in an area that was becoming Islamic at an alarming pace in the late 1980s. They also introduced spiritual dancing, flag worship and other visible elements not only into the Cape churches as a part of worship, but also quite far afield.

Counterproductive Islamic Moves
The relative success of evangelistic efforts in the second half of the 1990s has to be attributed in part to ‘own goals’ by the Muslims.  The general Christian indifference to the spread of Islam was temporarily checked through the report of the above-mentioned Islamic World Conference in Tripoli in October 1995.  The conference resolved that Muslims would now try to utilise South Africa’s excellent infrastructure to islamise the continent from the South.
          Initially the Tripoli announcement was not regarded as a real threat to the Gospel in Southern Africa.  The prospect only hit home a few months later when Louis Farrakhan, a prominent black American Muslim, visited the country.  Fairly soon after his successful mass march to Washington D.C. with his Nation of Islam in October 1995, Farrakhan came to the country amid much fanfare and prominent media coverage. The appeal to the Black masses was evident as he appeared on television together with President Nelson Mandela.
           Whereas the church had been fairly indifferent about its outreach to Muslims until that time, things changed almost overnight. The confident prediction from Tripoli in October 1995 did not sound so preposterous any more by February 1996. That this happened during Ramadan was just the tonic for Cape Christians to pray urgently.  Although Ramadan was almost over by this time, there was suddenly a big demand for the 30-Day Prayer Focus booklets.
A Kibbutz in the Boland
The Cape Town Scorpions, a Cape Flats gang, made an unprecedented move to set up their headquarters in the Roodewal township of Worcester, a country town about 100 km from Cape Town. Gangsters from the township Elsies River started training new recruits there. When gangster violence rocked Roodewal in 1986, Erena van Deventer was called into action. She was not completely satisfied with the peace that was brought about by the concerted prayer of believers. In response to the gangster activity, the Lord birthed in her heart the idea to set up a Kibbutz. She began to fast, cry and pray with new zeal for Roodewal. She wrote in her autobiographical booklet about this period of her life: ‘My life became a prayer to God’.
          Her failure to secure the purchase of the Shalvah Chavonnes property for the purpose of starting a Kibbutz only made Erena more determined. A link to Hudson McComb, who had started the ministry Beth Uriel for street children in Salt River, brought the vision for her Kibbutz into greater focus. When she was given a tract of property near Roodewal Township, she was ready to start her Kibbutz - South African style.
          This became the beginning of El Shammah Ministries. The kibbutz was used as a venue for the Discipleship Training School (DTS) of Youth with a Mission. The first DTS was held there in 1998, followed by an outreach to Malawi. Many a gangster was influenced in Roodewal.  Some in the disadvantaged community who had little formal schooling, came into a living relationship with Jesus. A few of them left the Cape shores as short term missionaries, using drama and other modern forms of ministry in different countries.

                                      13.  Response of the Church and Missions

Division is the paramount strategy of Satan. If he can use the church and its leaders to bring about division, he will never hesitate. Through the ages, the arch enemy has succeeded in sowing division in so many churches.
          In South Africa, the concrete fear of civil war before the elections of 1994 led to prayer meetings across the racial divide. However, the Cape Peninsula thereafter more or less lapsed back into its traditional racial and denominational divisions. Though there were, for instance, many prayer meetings for the gateway cities during October 1995, they were either confined to prayer within the local churches, or limited to combined inter-denominational prayer within the racial groupings.

A crisis following the first PAGAD moves
In 1995/6 conditions in the township of Manenberg were almost unbearable for the local people - completely out of control. Father Chris Clohessy, the local Roman Catholic priest, had earned the trust of many people of the township, moving fearlessly also in gangster territory. PAGAD was initiated by a group of Muslims in 1996 and joined by Father Chris Clohessy. However, in the ensuing inter-faith venture, Muslims were soon dominating proceedings. Prominent figures like Farouk Jaffer and Achmat Cassiem were reported to have performed a palace coup. Cassiem was the leader of Qibla, subtly changing the anti-drug, anti-crime movement into an organization that sought to usher in Islamic rule in the Western Cape by any means. PAGAD radicals saw this move merely as part of the plan to implement the October 1995 decision in the Libyan capital Tripoli.
          PAGAD became known publicly on 4 August 1996. That was the occasion when an influential drug lord, Rashaad Staggie, was burnt alive in full view of television cameras.  The crisis that followed the PAGAD eruption of August 1996 presented the churches with a challenge, an opportunity to impact the problem areas of the Cape townships. The danger of a Lebanon-type scenario was very real. Virtually everybody at the Cape feared that the gangsters might hit back with a vengeance. A meeting for church leaders and missionaries was organised at the Scripture Union buildings in Rondebosch, followed by a wave of prayer by evangelical Christians. Drug rehabilitation where Jesus is central was also suggested. (The Bet-el centres that had proved so successful in Spain, served as a model. Through this ministry, many drug addicts around the world have in the meantime experienced the liberating power of a personal faith in Jesus.)  However, when the crisis subsided, pastors simply resumed building their own ‘kingdoms’.
          A potentially dangerous development was the resuscitation of Afrikaner right-wing resistance.  On Sunday 5 January 1997, in a series of bombings, a mosque was savagely damaged. These atrocities were linked to a group who called themselves the Boere Aanvalstroepe. Luckily other right-wing Afrikaner groups distanced themselves from this group. Thus the dangerous situation was defused.

A Lebanon-type scenario?
Spiritual strongholds became a focus of prayer drives that were launched by Pastor Eddy Edson from Mitchells Plain and intercessors from different churches on the last Friday of each month in 1996. The prayer drive of July 1996 started at the strategic Gatesville mosque. This was the same venue from where a fateful PAGAD (People against Gangsterism and Drugs) car procession started a week later. That procession left for Salt River on August 4th, the occasion of Rashaad Staggie’s public burning. The event catapulted his twin brother and co-gang leader Rashied into prominence.
          The prayer drives unfortunately only had a short lifespan. An initiative of Eddie Edson, which lasted much longer, was the monthly pastors’ and pastors’ wives prayer meeting. Yet, it took years before the racial divide was bridged, and even then these prayer meetings still never really took off multi-racially. Nevertheless, they prepared the soil for the start of the spiritual transformation of the city.
          Sandwiched between the two above-mentioned processions that left the Gatesville mosque, a church service in the Moravian Church of Elsies River was to have worldwide ramifications. Mark Gabriel, the name adopted by a Muslim background believer from Egypt and who had been a former professor at the famous al-Azar University, shared his testimony there at a combined evening youth service on Sunday 28 July, 1996. (Gabriel previously had to flee his home country where he narrowly escaped assassination.) Within days, the booklet Against the Tides in the Middle East containing his story was in the hands of Muslims leaders. Maulana Sulaiman Petersen, who suspected that Gabriel had contact with local missionaries, threateningly enquired after him on Wednesday 31 July, at the time when Gabriel was doing the practical part of his Youth with a Mission (YWAM) Crossroads Discipleship Training School course in the city. He was forced to go undercover once again. The televised Staggie execution by PAGAD a few days later reminded him of Muslim radicals of the Middle East. Gabriel was inspired to research jihad, which resulted in a book that possibly influenced US policy on the Middle East in 2002.
          The PAGAD public ‘execution’ of August 4, 1996 took the attention away from Mark Gabriel. When the second printing of his testimony booklet Against the Tides in the Middle East appeared in 1997, it seemed as though Cape Islam was taking the booklet in its stride. He left the Cape in the wake of the PAGAD-related threat to his life.
          The 10-week teaching course ‘Love your Muslim Neighbour’ emphasised prayer as part and parcel of ‘spiritual warfare’.  Just before the course was scheduled to start, there was an arson attempt on the intended venue, the Uniting Reformed Church in Lansdowne. When Muslims offered to help with the repair of the damage done, the suspicion was confirmed that Satanists were not really behind the arson attack as had been suggested by a Cape Argus reporter. The reason that the first course was held at St James Church in Kenilworth from 3 September to 5 November 1996, was exactly because the organizers wanted to use it as a ‘Gideon’s fleece’ (compare Judges 6:36-40), a test to make sure that they had God’s will in it. A Lebanon-type of scenario - with Christians and Muslims fighting each other - appeared to be a very real possibility. The organizers of the course did not know at that time that Lansdowne was one of the big PAGAD strongholds.

A strategic meeting on Moravian Hill
International intercession began in earnest with the identification of the 10/40 Window. These are Asian and African countries situated between the 10th and 40th degree lines of latitude of the northern hemisphere. They gave a geographical focus to prayer. This was a divinely-inspired window passed on by Luis Bush, an American prayer leader. It was also used by Peter Wagner, a compatriot, to rally the evangelical world in united prayer for the peoples who were unreached with the Gospel.
At the occasion of the sending of prayer teams to different spiritual strongholds in 1997, a team from the Dutch Reformed Church Suikerbosrand from Heidelberg (Gauteng) followed the NUPSA nudge to come and pray in the Mother City. In the spiritual realm this was significant, because Heidelberg had once been the cradle of the racist Afrikaanse Weerstandsbeweging (AWB). That the AWB town, belonging to the Transvaal Province of the old South Africa, was sending a prayer team to pray for Bo-Kaap, might have hit the headlines had it been publicised!!! But all this was secret stuff. It was the era when PAGAD was still terrorising the Cape Peninsula.
As part of this visit from Gauteng, a prayer meeting of confession was organized on November 1, 1997 in District Six, in front of the former Moravian Church. Sally Kirkwood, who led a prayer group for Cape Muslims at her home in Plumstead in the mid-1990s, played a pivotal role in this prayer occasion. Kirkwood not only had a big vision for the desolate District Six to be revived through prayer, but she also informed Richard Mitchell and Mike Winfield about the event. The Cape prayer movement received a major push. Eben Swart was asked to lead the occasion. That turned out to be very strategic. Eben Swart’s position as Western Cape Prayer coordinator was cemented when he hereafter linked up with the pastors’ and pastors’ wives prayer meeting led by Eddie Edson.
        The event on Moravian Hill in District Six attempted to break the spirit of death and forlornness over the area, so that it would be inhabited again. However, it would take another seven years before that dream started to materialise (and abused for election purposes in 2004). The November 1, 1997-event became a watershed for quite a few participants. Gill Knaggs, Trish and Dave Whitecross got burdened hereafter to become missionaries in the Middle East. Sally Kirkwood came to the fore with a more prominent role among Cape intercessors. Richard Mitchell, Eben Swart and Mike Winfield linked up more closely at this occasion in a relationship that was to have a significant mutual effect on the prayer ministry at the Cape in the next few years, and on transformation in the country at large. Winfield belonged to the Anglican congregation in Bergvliet, which had Trevor Pearce as their new pastor. (The Anglican Church in Bergvliet later took a leading role in the attempts towards the transformation of the Mother City via the prayer events at Newlands.)  The confession ceremony in District Six closed with the stoning of an altar that Satanists or other occultists had probably erected there.

                                      14.    Anarchy or transformation?

          In November 1996 the launch of the 30-day Muslim Prayer Focus booklets took place in the historic St Stephen’s Church of Bo-Kaap. Bennie Mostert arranged the annual countrywide distribution, ensuring that the vision of countrywide prayer for Muslims once a year was guaranteed.

Intercessors from different areas
June Lehmensich, a regular at the Friday prayer meetings and an office worker for the City Council, had taken the pastoral clinical training course with Dr Dwyer in Lansdowne, in addition to attending the ‘Love your Muslim neighbour’ course at St James Church (Kenilworth) in 1996. She became a pivotal figure as she spread the vision for prayer, taking it right into the Provincial Chambers and the national Parliament. She was simultaneously the personification of faithfulness and perseverance, as well as a link to a prayer group with a long tradition at the Cape Town City Council.
          Intercessors were coming together from different places once a month at the Sowers of the Word Church in Lansdowne, where the veteran Pastor Andy Lamb was the leader. Eben Swart became the Western Cape coordinator for Herald Ministries, working closely with NUPSA (Network of United Prayer in Southern Africa), which had appointed Pastor Willy Oyegun as their coordinator in the Western Cape. Important work was done in research and spiritual mapping, along with Amanda Buys, who went on to start Kanaan Ministries. Some of her clients had been involved with Satanism.

Citywide prayer events
A citywide prayer event on the Grand Parade in 1998 almost floundered after a bomb threat. Churches across the Peninsula had initially been requested to cancel their evening services on Sunday, 19 April 1998. In sheer zeal, a Christian businessman had thousands of pamphlets printed and distributed without proper consultation with the organizing committee in respect of the content of the pamphlet. The flyer and poster that invited believers to a mass prayer meeting against drug abuse, homosexuality and other vice, unfortunately also referred to Islam in a context that was not respectful enough for some radical Muslims. 
          A PAGAD member apparently regarded this as an invitation to disrupt the meeting. The event was subsequently announced as cancelled, but a few courageous believers including the late Pastor Danny Pearson, who had been deeply involved with the organization of the prayer occasion, felt that they should not give in to the intimidation, and that, if need be, Christians should be willing to die for the cause of the Gospel. The meeting proceeded on a much smaller scale than originally planned. The prayer event included confession for the sins of omission to the Cape Muslims and to the Jews.
          A mass march to Parliament on 2 September 1998 - in response to the perceived attack on community radio stations - was followed by a big prayer event on Table Mountain a few weeks later. The prayer day, this time as an effort to rename the reviled peak ‘God’s Mountain’, was called for 26 September 1998. A few thousand Christians prayed over the city from Table Mountain. The event inspired a new initiative whereby a few believers from diverse backgrounds started to come together for prayer on Signal Hill on Saturdays every fortnight at 6 a.m.  Soon early Saturday morning prayer meetings also commenced at Tygerberg, Paarl Rock and on the Constantia Heights.  Christians from different churches thus demonstrated the unity of the body. 
          Richard Mitchell and his wife were pivotal in the resumption of early morning prayer meetings on Signal Hill. When the opening came for a regular testimony programme on Friday evening on Radio CCFM, Richard Mitchell was a natural choice. The programme ‘God Changes Lives’ with him as presenter, was naturally also used to advertise the citywide prayer events. Richard Mitchell left for England at the end of 1999. (Through him the vision of citywide prayer was exported from the Cape).

Churches Working Together

1998 had brought significant steps in the right direction through the initiatives of NUPSA (Network of Prayer in Southern Africa) and Herald Ministries. Regular prayer meetings at the Mowbray Baptist Church, with warriors coming from different parts of the Peninsula, and from different racial and church backgrounds, carried a strong message of the unity of the body of Christ. However, the suggestion in 1999 to continue on local level in different areas, never took off. Nevertheless, the Mowbray exercise brought together two racial groupings for prayer. This thus became the forerunner of citywide prayer events.
             In early 1999 Ernst van der Walt (jr) started working closely with Reverend Trevor Pearce, an Anglican cleric, in the sphere of the transformation of communities. They started distributing the video produced by George Otis. The video’s first screening to a big audience in Cape Town was at the Lighthouse Christian Centre in Parow in October 1999. Already in the short term this showing brought about substantial change in some churches. The video broke the ground for a citywide prayer event at the Newlands Rugby Stadium on 21 March 2001.
The Alpha Course (founded by Nicky Gumble in England) has resulted in many coming to a living faith in Jesus. The Promise Keepers, a movement established among American men, with its emphasis on taking responsibility in the family and commitment to fidelity in marriage, started to influence Cape society profoundly. Infidelity and divorce, a hallmark of American television society, which has been exported around the world, had become a major threat to family life everywhere.

Anarchy rather than transformation
Many Muslims perceived with initial satisfaction that the new government after 1994 was favouring Islam. Farid Esack - widely regarded as an Islamic liberation theologian - was given the gender chair in the new government. This frustrated conservative Muslims and young radicals alike, albeit for opposite reasons, causing feuds in the Muslim community. The conservative group was disappointed that Esack interpreted Islam in a way that enhanced gender equality. At the same time, the radicals considered that the country did not move significantly nearer to the ideal of an Islamic state, the clear aim of the Hamas-Hisbollah related Qibla. The majority of Muslims was nevertheless satisfied with the direction of the ANC- dominated government. Many regarded the new regime to be favourable to Islam as part of its policy of affirmative action. A hero from Islamic ranks, Dullah Omar, the new Minister of Justice, was however regarded to have been responsible for the notorious law on easy access to bail. This caused some uneasiness in Muslim ranks, because many perceived easy bail as the prime reason for the spiralling crime levels. (So typical of human nature, he is not remembered for the ground-breaking Truth and Reconciliation Commission, for which he introduced legislation as well. A bigger due for this legislation is however to be given to another Muslim, Professor Kader Asmal, who suggested such a commission originally in his inaugural address some years ago at the University of the Western Cape.)

Gangsterism and Drug Addiction
A major cause of Islamic bewilderment was the side effects of People Against Gangsterism and Drugs (PAGAD). Quite a few founder and early members of PAGAD left the group because of the violence and the aggressive stance that the Qibla faction exuded. Many peace-loving Muslims could also not palate the new direction.
          Police connivance with gangsters and drug dealers created an immense problem. The groups of gangsters and drug dealers often overlapped, although the drug lords also included businessmen with overseas connections. Amongst other vice, guns and drugs were ‘recycled’ by corrupt policemen. The PAGAD clash with gangsters after August 1996 caused a major upheaval in Muslim communities throughout the Peninsula, even throughout the country. In only a few months PAGAD achieved much in order to create awareness that made the abuse and spread of drugs less attractive. Furthermore, the public execution of Rashaad Staggie on August 4, 1996 continued to haunt the movement.  The rumour was spread that the deceased drug lord had a crucifix around his neck at his ‘execution’. In Manenberg he was actually called ‘brother Rashaad’ at the time of his death. The reason given for his punishment was however his drug peddling. Of this he was obviously guilty.  Muslim background believers received threats at this time.
          The drug dealers hereafter moved to the countryside. Drug peddling was thus actually inadvertently spread through PAGAD pressure. From Zaire, now the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), drug peddlers and later a ring of Nigerian nationals with the same purpose, were quick to supply the local market, hardly targeted or harassed. When they moved to Cape Town (from drug centres like Hillbrow and Yeoville in Johannesburg), the Mother City probably became the drug capital of the country. A drug syndicate from Nigeria started activities right in the central area of the city, some of them operating at night on the parking area of the City Baptist Church in Orange Street.  
 15. Spiritual warfare around drug-related issues

          The spiritual warfare from the side of the enemy of souls was conducted in the Cape Flats townships mainly through a related threesome, viz. drug addiction, gangsterism and prostitution. Over the last two decades these vices proved the ideal opening for Satanism.
          For months the drug and gang war kept the Mother City of South Africa in suspense. Violence, rape and gangsterism sky-rocketed. These tripling of vice still remain unsolved problems of the city and the country as a whole.
In Cape Town itself there also occurred a shift. Whereas the centre of drug peddling has been ‘Coloured’ areas like Woodstock until the early 1990s, the new huge shopping malls like Tiger Valley Centre took over in prominence for the sale of expensive drugs like heroine and crack cocaine. Another change was the age of the drug users. A few years ago the sale in the townships had more or less been restricted to people around 20 years and older. But around the turn of the millennium, drugs were being sold at schools, along with sweets and popcorn, by street vendors at lunchtime. 

From Cairo to the world at large
A new dimension was added to the Cape scene. The testimony of Mustapha, the pseudonym of a converted former sheikh and lecturer from the Al Azar University of Cairo, was published in South Africa in 1996. The PAGAD public ‘execution’ of August 4 took the attention away from him. When the second printing of his booklet Against the Tides in the Middle East appeared in 1997, it seemed as if Cape Islam was taking the testimony in its stride. He adopted the name Mark Gabriel.
             While he was in hiding at the Cape, Gabriel started with significant research of jihad (holy war) in Arabic Islamic literature, finishing the manuscript in 2001 in the USA, where he had moved to in the meantime. The September 11 event of that year made his book on the topic a best seller when it appeared at the beginning of 2002. It came out under the title Terrorism and Islam. The book turned out to be a major factor in the exposure of the violent side of Islam.

Efforts to minister to drug addicts
One of the first efforts of Cape Christians to reach out in love to drug addicts structurally happened more or less by chance. John Higson, a member of the evangelical St James Church in Kenilworth, requested a different residential area for their door-to-door outreach as a Life Challenge co-worker. He had become frustrated after the lack of success of their endeavour in the suburb of Lansdowne. Salt River was hereafter allocated to him. During the second week of prayer for Salt River, Higson was confronted with the major drug problem in the township-like suburb. This was the start of a St James Church effort among the drug addicts of Salt River under Higson’s leadership. The actual outreach to Salt River from the Kenilworth church ceased in 1995, without much of an impact achieved. The co-workers were disheartened - yet another case of Christians honourably wounded in the spiritual warfare at the Cape. The seed of Higson’s ministry however germinated towards the end of the century when Judy Tao, a missionary from Taiwan, joined Martin Wortley, who had once been mentored by John Higson. They started up AMOS, a new ministry from the church in 2000 AD.
          In November 1997 the gang war erupted once again. This time TEASA (The Evangelical Alliance of South Africa) called a meeting at Baker House in Athlone. There, it was decided that churches would initiate monthly inter-denominational prayer meetings. However, none of the nice-sounding resolutions aired at that meeting were perseveringly implemented.

A special vision for work of compassion
Zulpha Morris, who became a follower of Jesus after receiving supernatural visions in July 1998, had much opposition when she was divinely called to take care of abandoned babies. Within less than two years she had more than 30 children in her township home in Beacon Valley, Mitchells Plain, which underwent a few extensions. The garage was converted for accommodation purposes and the yard at the back became a sewing workshop for women. A container, in which diverse goods and furniture had come from Holland, was part of God’s special provision to get this project off the ground. The original content was intended for a discipling house for persecuted and evicted converts from Islam. The sacrificial work of Zulpha and her husband Abdul became a challenge to many a foreigner. In one case a student from Switzerland, who came to Cape Town to learn English, was inspired by what he saw in Mitchells Plain. After returning to his home country, he started a home for drug and alcohol addicts there.

PAGAD involvement in drug smuggling and abuse
It was embarrassing for PAGAD, an organization that claimed to fight drugs, when some of their leaders and many members were exposed as drug abusers and drug peddlers.  Of course, there is some clout in the argument that the addicted could possibly be helped if the source of their problem - drug distribution - were removed. Insiders suggested that the skirmish between PAGAD and the gangster drug lords revolved around the import of drugs, coming respectively from the Caribbean and the Indian subcontinents. However, the bottom line was that drug abuse and its spin-offs were creating havoc in many homes.

The road to anarchy paved?
A bomb explosion at the Planet Hollywood Restaurant at the Cape Town Waterfront on 25 August, 1998 shook the Cape in more than one way.  PAGAD activists were suspected to be behind the bombing. Since then, it has surfaced that ‘making the country ungovernable’ - the example set by anti-apartheid radicals in the late 1980s - was an integral part of the strategy agreed to by extremists, in order to create the platform for an Islamic state. The Planet Hollywood bombing resulted in more confusion in the Muslim community. A leading Muslim, the academic Dr Ebrahim Moosa, went on television announcing that he would be taking his family overseas, away from the developing hearth.
          The PAGAD actions definitely did not have the intention of harming the Muslim cause. However, the public statements of a Muslim leader leaving the country - albeit temporarily - might have created the impression that he was leaving a sinking ship. This perception was enhanced when the Cape Times, a local daily newspaper, announced a week later that Sa’dullah Khan, an influential sheikh who was linked to the prestigious Gatesville mosque, was also leaving Cape shores. 
          Many Capetonians breathed more easily when it seemed as if Ganief Daniels, a Muslim, was getting PAGAD under control with a new police initiative, Operation Good Hope. The cause of disquiet shifted to the gangsters when rape appeared to have become rife. With cases reported in the City Bowl and other formerly White areas, along with the simultaneous spiralling of HIV/AIDS, Christians from all races were forced to wake up. There was a clear reason for more prayer. During a church leaders’ meeting on 7 October 1998, quite a few churches in Cape Town made a decision to ‘join hands’ in an attempt to take the City for Jesus!
          The road to anarchy looked paved as the year 1999 opened with a car bomb on the Cape Town Waterfront. It was seen as a miracle that only three cars were damaged with no loss of life. The first results of police investigations linked the atrocity to Muslim radicals. No group claimed responsibility for the bombing. One shudders to think what could have developed from this senseless act if many people had been killed during the high season of tourism at that venue.

The prelude to and aftermath of an Islamic night of power
On 8 January 1999 Mr Tony Blair, the British Prime Minister, was scheduled to hand out medals to his countrymen who helped in the democratization of this country. This was to take place at a ceremony at the Castle of Cape Town. The occasion was the fusing of the various factions of the defence force. The timing was however unfortunate, appearing like having the potential of putting fire to a powder keg. 
            A new Muslim extremist splinter group that used the name Muslims against Global Oppression (MAGO), took the opportunity to steal the limelight from the high British dignitary with a violent, illegal demonstration. They wanted to protest against British assistance in the bombing of Iraq. With Muslims visible and audible, the violent incident reflected badly on Islamic adherents. Yusuf Jacobs, a young Muslim and one of the protesters, was shot in the head by police. When he appeared to be dying in Groote Schuur Hospital, the scene was set for ‘Jihad’.  PAGAD promptly called for a holy war if he were to die.    
              A tense situation followed when this happened on 12 January 1999. At Jacobs’ funeral the next day, a PAGAD leader threatened to make the country ungovernable. In the charged atmosphere he used words that could have had dire consequences. Fortunately, he retracted these words. That he did apologise (or was he was forced to?), was significant.
          The ‘Holy War’ became nevertheless more than mere words the very day after the Jacobs’ funeral. Bennie Lategan, a leading police detective who had investigated the PAGAD related activities, was killed on 14 January 1999. The whole country was alarmed. The ‘War in Cape Town’ became an issue for prayer countrywide when Christians were challenged by Herald Ministries to get together for prayer on the evening of 15 January, the Muslim Night of Power. (This is celebrated annually in remembrance of the first Qur’anic revelations.)  
          A mini-crisis developed when the pre-recorded testimony via the CCFM radio station of Majiet Poblonker, an Indian convert from Islam, would coincide with the Islamic Night of Power.  The Muslim background follower of Jesus was understandably uptight. Parts of Poblonker’s testimony about the persecution he had to endure, could fortunately be deleted from the recording just before the transmission.
          Amidst the volatile atmosphere, it would probably have enraged Muslims terribly had the story been aired how his family almost assassinated him. The powerful testimony was nevertheless bound to effect Cape Islam, coming only a day after another female convert from Islam, Ayesha Hunter, had given part of her story on the ‘Life Issues’ radio programme of CCFM.
                                               16. Peace Initiatives

          Glen Khan, a gang leader and drug lord whose wife had been a secret Christian believer for some months, was assassinated on Easter Sunday, 1999 - only a few days after he had committed his life to Jesus as his Lord. Two weeks prior to Khan’s assassination, Rashied Staggie, by now a famous Cape drug lord, had been shot and hospitalised. Staggie made the news headlines from his bed in the Louis Leipoldt Clinic in Bellville through his public confession of faith in Jesus. In the wake of Glen Khan’s funeral on 7 April 1999 and Staggie’s powerful testimony on that occasion, Muslims started turning to Christ more than before.
          Suddenly PAGAD was marginalised. It was not surprising that the group now frantically sought for credibility. When ‘Muslim leaders’ wanted to speak to Edson, a confrontation was feared, because reports were coming in of Muslims who turned to Christ in the wake of the Khan funeral, some in trains. Intercessors were called in to bathe the proposed meeting in prayer.  A general crisis was feared once again.
          Pastor Edson was surprised when the ‘Muslim leaders’ turned out to be representatives of PAGAD. This was a major turn-around on the part of the extremists. It was however quite unexpected that they had become willing, almost eager, to speak to churches. This was God supernaturally at work, but Pastor Eddie Edson and his pastor colleagues were not immediately aware of it. Only a few weeks prior to this meeting on 13 April, PAGAD had refused to meet any Christians or other mediators. A direct result of this meeting was the birth of the Cape Peace Initiative - church leaders trying to mediate between PAGAD and gang leaders.
            An agenda for a bigger consultation scheduled for 22 April, was agreed upon. This was due to take place at the Pinelands Civic Centre. Discussions with gang leaders took place on the same day. At the meeting, prayer warriors were not only interceding for the discussions, but some of them were also helping to serve the delegations at mealtimes.
            A tense moment developed when the issue of violence was addressed. The PAGAD leaders asked for permission to discuss the matter separately. It was evident to the CPI delegation that God had intervened powerfully. PAGAD was suddenly ready to approach the government with them - unarmed! This was an answer to the prayer of the warriors around the country who had been interceding for the proceedings.

Prayer efforts in the Cape Town City Bowl
A forty-day fast from Easter Sunday to Ascension Day 1998 included days of prayer and fasting by a few churches in the City Bowl. Rev Louis Pasques of the Cape Town Baptist Church spearheaded this endeavour. This weekly meeting with a prayer emphasis gained ground slowly after the 40-day prayer effort from April to May 1998.
          A corresponding move in 1999 - this time with a prayer period of 120 days - was concluded in the Western Cape in the traditional Groote Kerk celebration of the Lord’s Supper on Ascension Day. In the service pastors from different denominations officiated, a signal of a growing church unity.       
          At the Groote Kerk Ascension Day event, Dr Robbie Cairncross was divinely brought into the equation. He came to the Mother City with a vision to see a network of prayer developing in the Peninsula. His prayer for an office for his Christian Coalition/Family Alliance near to Parliament was answered in a special way, and he could move into the premises of the Chamber of Commerce at 4 Church Square, a stone’s throw from the Houses of Parliament. Cairncross’ plan became quite strategic when Achmed Kariem, a convert from Islam with a vision for taking and distributing prayer information, came onto his staff. Cairncross went on to become an international evangelist with a significant healing ministry.
          In an initiative by Pastor Eddie Edson of Mitchells Plain, occasional all-night citywide prayer events started, one each on 25 June and 15 October 1999.

Research of Spiritual Influences 
‘Spiritual mapping’ is a term that has been used in recent years for research into spiritual influences, especially those of a demonic or anti-Christian nature. In respect of Islam, Gerda Leithgöb had already introduced the exercise to the Cape at a prayer seminar in Rylands Estate in January 1995, but only in 1999 was it practiced in Cape Islamic areas. The Cape Reformed Church of Manenberg was possibly the first to use it pointedly. Herb Ward, a lecturer from the USA with links to the Bible Institute in Kalk Bay, was brought in to equip the believers in that fellowship of the notorious township. 
            Manenberg was the locality that depicted the change in the religious climate in 1999 more than any other. An off-sales liquor distribution centre, the Green Dolphin, changed hands dramatically when it became a church. The name Green Pastures was suggested by a resident. Even more dramatic was the turn-about of Die Hok, the former national headquarters of the Hard Livings gang, which also became a church. Pastor Eddie Edson, who had been a gangster himself in earlier days, spearheaded the Manenberg outreach.  The spiritual revolution in the notorious township received countrywide prominence through the television programme Crux on Sunday 25 July 1999.
          Manenberg gang leaders hit back by forcibly recruiting young boys into their gangs. In April 2000 Manenberg was still making negative news headlines with the innocent killing of children in gang crossfire. Much prayer was still needed if the crime and violence was to be stopped. Pastor Edson discerned that Manenberg was a key township in the spiritual warfare in the Peninsula. He not only requested the venue for the monthly pastors and pastors’ wives  prayer meeting for July 2000 to be relocated to ‘Die Hok’ , but he was also the driving force to get a 10,000-seater tent campaign into that township. 

A sequel to a funeral - transformation
The Glen Khan assassination of Easter 1999 was divinely used to bring churches together, not only for prayer, but to some extent also with a vision to reach out to Muslims in love. Before this time the perceived resistance of Muslims to the Gospel, and the lack of success in Muslim evangelism deterred many Christians. This changed quite significantly after the conversion of Rashied Staggie, the famous drug lord. Following Khan’s death, some churches showed a new interest in the lives of gangsters. On April 28, a report back occasion of the meeting between church leaders and the PAGAD leadership in Pinelands (of 22 April 1999) took place at ‘Christ Church’ in Kenilworth. However, only a few pastors attended. 
          Nevertheless, a metamorphosis occurred at the Jubilee Church that had commenced with negotiations to sell their buildings located in Crawford, to Muslims. They now joined other churches in the Cape Peace Initiative (CPI). The New Covenant Fellowship of Hout Bay, at which spontaneous prayer for the 13 April meeting with PAGAD leaders had taken place, also participated in a Southern Suburbs prayer event. Both churches were represented at the badly attended but strategic report-back meeting in Kenilworth. The two churches linked up with the Community Transformation movement that took over from the Cape Peace Initiative.

More Curbs of spiritual Revival
During the years 1999 and 2000 people started speaking scathingly about the renaming of Table Bay and the city respectively to Bombay and Rape Town. Bombs were exploding at regular intervals and people of all ages and of both sexes were being raped - even in public places like train stations and on trains. Nigerians and other North Africans converged onto the Cape - to export vice from the southern tip of Africa.  Homosexuality seemed to team up with Islam and Satanism in the City Bowl as the main forces to curb spiritual revival. At this time clergymen with homosexual tendencies started to encourage the dubious practice more overtly.
Sexual perversion and growing Satanism were just other expressions that gave one the impression that Cape Town was becoming comparable to the biblical Sodom and Gomorrah. The New Age movement, with the formal variant of inter-faith, seemed to have drowned the evangelical roots at the Cape at the time of the World Parliament of Religions in December 1999.
          Natural prayer fuel was provided by the possibility of an escalation of tension between Muslims and Jews in the Mother City, because of the situation in the Middle East.

Search for Truth
Gerhard Nehls, the missionary pioneer among Cape Muslims, did not sit still even after his retirement from active mission work in 1997.  In conjunction with Trans World Radio, he became the mastermind behind a video series, Battle for the Hearts. The series, which was finally produced with the aid of various experts, provides Christians with in-depth knowledge regarding Islam. Although already in his early seventies, Nehls also delved into modern electronic technology, starting to create a database of important books on Muslim evangelism on CD Rom. In 2004 he initiated yet another venture called ‘Each one, reach one’. Neville Truter was his local man to challenge Christians to reach out locally, using booklets for which Nehls brought in funds from overseas.
            A booklet with stories of converts from the Cape, Search for Truth, as well as tracts with testimonies narrating how they came out of Islam, eroded a prevalent Cape Muslim notion.  This was the almost axiomatic belief that if one is born a Muslim, one must die a Muslim. Life Challenge Africa and WEC International published a second booklet as a joint venture in 2004 with more testimonies of Muslim background believers from the Cape: Search for Truth 2. The fearless confessions of converts from Islamic background via the radio helped many a secret believer who feared to disclose their new-found faith in Christ. 

 17. Anointed Ministries

          Over the years many gangsters turned to Islam on discovering that occult aid via ‘doekums’ (Muslim sorcerers) was available for protection and for getting away with mild sentences after committing serious crimes. 

Prison Ministry
An evangelistic effort, which has mushroomed over the past decade, has been the prison ministry. A few role-players have deserved special mention. Eric Hofmeyer summarised his life as ‘a disaster changed by the Master, and now serving Him as a pastor.’ He had been a gangster when he came to faith in Christ. In the 1990s Hofmeyer counselled many gangsters in the massive Pollsmoor prison. Quite a number of them turned to Christ.
          Johaar Viljoen, who had won over many Christians to Islam, came to faith in Jesus in the prison of the rural town of Caledon. His conversion in 1992 - a demonstration of the power of prayer - shook many Islamic inmates who regarded him as their prison imam. Viljoen was well versed in the Bible and the literature of Ahmed Deedat, who had been his hero. Before his conversion in the Caledon prison, Viljoen frustrated the evangelistic efforts of Christian workers there.  Three of those workers decided to take him on through prayer and fasting. When Viljoen studied the Bible - in order to fight the Christians even better - he was overwhelmed when he compared the narration of the near-sacrifice of Isaac with the Qur’anic version.  Prisons have also been impacted in the countryside, such as at the youth prison near Wellington, where young inmates voluntarily started to attend Bible studies.
            A former prisoner at Pollsmoor prison, Jonathan Clayton, became a pastor with a special concern for prisoners. His conversion was the fruit of the prayers of his family and friends, including his future wife Jenny Adams, an Africa Evangelical Fellowship missionary. Clayton attended the Baptist Seminary after his release, and started to minister in Pollsmoor prison on Saturday mornings while he was still a theological student. Members of the Strandfontein Baptist Church, the home congregation of his wife, assisted him. In 1999 Clayton became a prison chaplain.
            Shona Allie is another person who has been powerfully used in prisons around the country. Allie angered many Muslims when she honestly stated her conviction - in a mosque of all places - that Jesus is indeed the Son of God, and that he died on the cross for our sins. Throughout the country, prisons have been impacted by her ministry.
          Ruweyda Abdullah is another Muslim background believer who became involved in the ministry at Pollsmoor, challenging many a gangster there during the process of restorative justice. The Soon Bible correspondence programme of Worldwide Evangelization for Christ (WEC) International, under the leadership of Pam Forbes, has been a powerful tool for reaching prisoners all over the country.

The Battle of the airwaves        
At the GCOWE conference in Pretoria in July 1997, Avril Thomas, the Directress of Radio CCFM (Cape Community FM), formerly Radio Fish Hoek, was challenged to use the station to reach out to Cape Muslims. She phoned the author, offering airtime for a regular programme to this effect.  At that stage we had only assisted with advice and teaching to the ‘prayer friends’ of the radio station, people who had to speak to those Muslims who would phone CCFM.
        Since the 1994 Jesus Marches and the effort to start a prayer network in the Peninsula, there had been contact with Trefor Morris, who was closely linked to Radio Fish Hoek. Occasionally he joined in the Friday lunchtime prayer at the Shepherd’s Watch in Shortmarket Street.
        We had to warn Avril Thomas of the unsuccessful arson attempt on the Lansdowne Church where we wanted to stage a Muslim Evangelism seminar in 1996. She and the CCFM board were prepared to take the risk for the sake of the Gospel.
        A radio series on biblical figures in the Qur’an and the Talmud was transmitted towards the end of 1997. After a gradual increase of occasional programmes geared to address the Cape Muslim population, missionaries felt challenged to start utilising the CCFM offer to use the medium on a regular basis. 
        In the meantime, Gill Knaggs, a co-worker from Muizenberg, offered her services to CCFM in 1997. Gill also had previous experience in commercial script writing. Soon she was ready to write the scripts for Ayesha Hunter and Salama Temmers, two followers of Jesus with an Islamic upbringing. At a meeting on 7 January 1998 it was decided to start with a regular programme via CCFM, making use of the two converts as presenters. On the same day the radio station Voice of the Cape published their intention in the Cape Argus to use a convert from Christianity as one of their presenters.
        The precedent created space for CCFM radio to follow suit - with less fear of PAGAD reprisals for putting Muslim converts on air.  Ayesha and Salama soon hereafter started with a weekly programme, beginning with the theme ‘the woman of two faces’.  Gradually many women, some of them Muslims, started responding with phone calls, hereby giving evidence that the radio programmes were making an impact. Life Issues, the women’s programme on CCFM on a Thursday morning went from strength to strength until it ceased to operate in the second half of 2004 when CCFM restructured their programmes.
        At some point in time Radio CCFM needed more space for their studios. Within days after the public announcement of a day of prayer for this need, a building was bought in Muizenberg.  Provision of the finances was spectacular, a clear indication that God was in the move.
        It was evident that the Holy Spirit was at work. Supernatural visitations came to the fore in March 1999, possibly as a direct result of 120 days of prayer and fasting in which many Christians were involved. A Muslim woman phoned CCFM after she had had different visions of Jesus, receiving instructions from Him to read portions of the Bible that very clearly related to her life. Soon thereafter she accepted Christ as her Saviour. The phone-in programmes of Radio CCFM and the sister Afrikaans station, Radio Tygerberg, proved very effective. Many Muslims including converts and secret believers were phoning in.  A very special result was when a Muslim who had phoned the station in 2003, could not only be ministered to, but she later became a co-worker, responding to the calls of Muslim enquirers.

Threats and attacks on Christian Radio Work
 A white paper was rushed through Parliament on 20 August 1998, which contained a veiled threat: the closing down of community radio stations. There had previously already been an attempt to close down Radio Pulpit, a Christian radio station that broadcasts nationwide.
        The ill-fated government white paper on public broadcasting - whatever its original intention - resulted in a mass march to the houses of Parliament on Wednesday, 2 September 1998. The perception could not be removed sufficiently that the government wanted to regulate the airwaves in such a way that the freedom of religious broadcasting would be severely curtailed. For the first time in modern times twenty thousand Cape Christians from different races and denominations marched in unprecedented unity. One of the banners proclaimed „United we stand”, a wry reminder of PAGAD’s main slogan. Wisely, the government dropped their plans.
      From time to time, local Muslim background followers of Jesus shared their testimonies on the CCFM programme that started in January 1999 called God Changes Lives. Two consecutive issues of this programme by Achmed Adjei - a convert from Ghana - had reverberations as he shared how he and his 28 siblings came to the Lord one after the other. The same programme also made inroads into other religious groups. Thus the testimony of Richard John Smith, a famous Cape singer of the 1980s, who had been a New Apostolic, surely had a profound effect as did the conversion story of Herschel Raysman, who came from a Jewish background. Raysman came to believe in Jesus as his Messiah when he linked up with the Jesus People in the 1970s. In later years he was to lead the Beit Ariel Messianic congregation in Sea Point.

Fireworks of a different calibre detonate
More ‘fireworks’ exploded at the beginning of the academic year 1999.  Dean Ramjoomia, a Muslim convert, shared his testimony on the radio. He also started attending the Evangelical Bible School in Strandfontein. At the George Whitefield Bible College in Muizenberg, a teatime prayer group was started to coincide with the time when Life Issues - the Thursday version of the women’s programme with two converts from Islam - was broadcast. Gill Knaggs, a new student at the George Whitefield Bible College, and the programme’s scriptwriter, initiated the prayer meeting.
      On March 1, 1999, the battle of the airwaves took a nasty turn when a petrol bomb was thrown at the CCFM Radio studio. Luckily the missile did not detonate. The cowardly action was repeated a few weeks later on March 18.  This time the perpetrators smashed a window pane, and also made sure that a burning ‘torch’ was dropped inside the building. Miraculously there was neither an explosion of the petrol bomb, nor was the studio or the expensive equipment arsonised. God evidently had his hand protectively over the building. The second attempt occurred only hours before the scheduled broadcasting of the Life Issues programme. This threw the suspicion of the possible perpetrators very much in the proximity of the radical PAGAD corner of Islam.  On various other occasions that group had indicated that they were very unhappy about people turning their backs on Islam.  However, there was also a Satanist group in Fish Hoek, which could have been possible candidates for the arson attempts.

                                                18. A Special Month of Prayer

             „Sooispit” - the turning of the soil – in preparation for the building of a prayer room in the Western Cape, took place on February 9, 2000.  Charles Robertson, a Cape Christian businessman with a heart for prayer - along with his wife Rita - generously donated resources towards a venue for the work of NUPSA in the Western Cape. The premises in Bellville were earmarked to become a 24-hour prayer room for intercessors from the whole continent.
            Daniel and Estelle Brink were called to lead the NUPSA initiative to get 24-hour Prayer Watch off the ground at the Cape. That this was spiritual warfare of a high degree became evident when Daniel Brink became critically ill shortly after commencing his new function. The Lord touched and healed him in answer to the prayers of many intercessors.

Support from Abroad
In February 2000, Susan and Ned Hill, a couple from Atlanta (USA) linked to Blood ‘n Fire Ministries, visited the Mother City on an orientation visit after they sensed a call to come and minister to the poor and needy in South Africa. While being on a tourist visit to Table Mountain, their eyes were supernaturally fixed on a piece of desolate ground that they soon learned was called District Six. They visited the museum with that name, which was temporarily housed in the Moravian Chapel in District Six. There they heard the tragic story of the former cosmopolitan slum area of the Mother City that was demolished in the wake of apartheid legislation. (At that time the ear-marked locality for the District Six museum, a former Methodist Church, was being refurbished.)
            The unity of the body of Christ became visible at a mass half-night of prayer on 18 February 2000 on the Grand Parade, organised at short notice. On the same weekend two Dutchmen, Pieter Bos and Cees Vork, representing the prayer movement in Holland, joined local Christians in confession and in praying against satanic strongholds in the Peninsula.
            Four thousand Christians from a wide spectrum of denominations gathered on the Grand Parade.  Denominationalism, materialism and other evils in South African society in which the church had played a role in the past, were confessed. In a moving moment just before midnight the two Dutchmen, Pieter Bos and Cees Vork, joined local intercessors, confessing the catastrophic contribution of their forefathers to the evils of Cape society.
            A prayer network had developed towards a preliminary culmination in the half-night of prayer on the Grand Parade. Since then, prayer events proliferated countrywide through the 24-Hour prayer watches and revival prayer attempts. Here the electronic media played a big role.
            The arch enemy would not remain idle at such activity. It had been discovered that Satanists had been distributing cursed audio and videocassettes to various parts of the country. Subsequently, accidents occurred at these locations. The Cape Town City Bowl was confronted with the possibility of Satanist activities after paint had been spilled on roads at night. The white lines formed in this way could have led to confusion that in turn would have resulted in motor accidents.

Training of Prayer and Intercessors Leaders
During the early hours one day in February 2000, en route by car from Pretoria to Cape Town, Eben Swart, the Western Cape leader of Herald Ministries sensed the Lord ordering him directly: „You have to start training prayer leaders in Cape Town.” 
After months of consultation with prayer leaders across a wide spectrum of views and backgrounds, the Prayer and Intercessors Leaders Training Course (PILTC) was born – a completely new, unique attempt to prepare prayer and intercession leaders of a city in a uniform, non-confrontational way for their task.
On the 15th of September 2000, the first course kicked off in the suburb of Parow. Initially, the idea was to present the course only once, and thereafter to merge it with the prayer movement. But the first course soon developed into a second, and the second into a third. The need was so vast that Eben Swart only stopped running the PILTC courses four years later. In a further development Swart was challenged to get involved with the house church movement. House churches were started in different suburbs of the Cape Peninsula the next few years.

Remorse and Tears
The visit by the two Dutch intercessors spurred significant moves in the second half of the month. Divine guidance was evident at the events of 19 February 2000. It was initiated by NUPSA in the process of „closing the gates” of the sinful roots of slavery in preparation for a conference in Pretoria from 22 to 26 March. The two Dutchmen Pieter Bos and Cees Vork highlighted the roots of a number of evils that originated in their country. Thus the roots of materialism - typified by Simon van der Stel, an early Cape governor - were addressed through prayers of confession at Van der Stel’s farm Groot Constantia.
            In prayers at satanic strongholds in the Peninsula that have their roots in Holland and Indonesia, freemasonry and slavery were singled out for special confession. The Holy Spirit moved mightily as Pieter Bos and Cees Vork repented on behalf of their forefathers for their role in the slave trade. Their ancestral forbears had perpetrated ungodly malpractices that were known to be evil. At the moving occasion on 19 February 2000 at the Cultural Museum (the former slave lodge), there was hardly a dry eye around, as the Holy Spirit moved through the room. The awesome presence of God was evident when two descendants of the San and Khoi tribes (respectively the so-called Bushmen and the Hottentots) were completely overcome by remorse for the actions of their ancestors. Tears flowed freely as descendants of a few other people groups asked each other for forgiveness.

A Challenge for Church Unity
At a meeting with intercessors in Stellenbosch, Pieter Bos challenged the church at the Cape to get their act together, since as a rule, revival only takes place in a unified church.    
            Much of the week’s events were organised on short notice - here and there things happened on the spur of the moment. This gave rise to a great expectation that the Holy Spirit was at last ushering in the long-awaited revival. It was very appropriate that Art Katz, a Christian from the Jewish faith, challenged the believers from similar background in Sea Point and Somerset West.  In prophetic style Katz did not mince his words, challenging his audience - especially those from Jewish stock - to take their role seriously. He also warned that they had to be prepared for suffering.
            Katz stated categorically that judgement is intrinsic to the nature of Yahweh, that the cross and resurrection are central tenets of Scripture, rather than celebration. This message was of course not so readily palatable, but definitely a word in season, a challenge to the church at large.
            More rays of light started to break through. Here and there, remorse and repentance by Christians for their negative attitude towards Muslims surfaced. At the turn of the millennium, there were signs that Cape Islam had started to abandon much of its confrontational approach towards Christianity, an approach so typical of the PAGAD era (August 1996 to April 1999). In the township Bonteheuwel the same building was for instance not only used by Muslims and the Assemblies of God Church, but this was also reported favourably in February 2000 in the Athlone News, a newspaper that is distributed free of charge in homes in that area.

Another season of spiritual combat
Conflict was escalating between the notorious minibus ‘taxi’ drivers and the Golden Arrow Bus Company, which both transport commuters from the townships. Nobody suspected that the shooting of a bus driver of the bus company would bring the black townships to the brink of anarchy once again. At this time, a drug criminal with spurious links to the police force, was set free much sooner than his sentence had prescribed.
          May 2000 seemed predestined to introduce another season of spiritual combat, with the police force not only in disarray, but they were also frustrated by a judiciary that was perceived to be corrupt.
            On Friday evening the 19th of May, a citywide half night of prayer took place at the UWC Sports Ground in Bellville, attended by 6,000 people. Here the unity of the body was emphasised! In the spiritual realm it was certainly very powerful when Pastor Martin Heuvel apologised on behalf of about 40 pastors present, among other things for lording over their flocks, for being dogmatic, and for the lack of a servant attitude. An important introduction was the ongoing translation of the proceedings into Xhosa, thus demonstrating that the presence of Capetonian Blacks was appreciated.
            There was ample evidence from different quarters that spiritual warfare was increasing once again, rather than subsiding. Satanist traits surfaced here and there, notably when the chopped-off head of a mentally handicapped young man was abused to instil fear into people. The arrest of 19 PAGAD members in Tafelsig, a violence-ridden part of Mitchells Plain, on 21 May 2000 after a shoot-out, was publicised as a major breakthrough. Only three gangsters were arrested, and that not even immediately. Thus the notion was strengthened that the police force was siding with criminals. The necessity for transformation through revival was thus highlighted once again.
                                                19. The spiritual war heats up

The year 2000 saw the start of a small but nevertheless unprecedented turning to Christ by Muslims. This happened especially in the Mitchells Plain area. Prominent in the evangelization was the witness of converts from Islam, also in trains and through the radio ministry via CCFM. But the spiritual battle was far from over. Muslims also claimed gains. This consisted especially from recruiting among the destitute Black communities. New mosques were built and the Christian Science Church opposite the historic Huguenot Hall and the evangelical Baptist Church in Orange Street in the City became a mosque in 2005.
            In June 2000 the battle in the spiritual realms was raging in the City Bowl as never before. A television report showed how the Mother City was drawing gay tourists from around the world. Satanists were also staking their claims to impact the city.

A special Jesus March           
While preparations were being finalised for a Jesus March on 10 June 2000, it almost seemed as if Satan wanted to foil the event when someone placed a bomb at the New York Bagles restaurant in Sea Point, a few kilometres away from the City centre. This happened a few days before the Jesus March was due to take place in the Company Gardens. At the famous and well-patronised Sea Point restaurant the bomb, hidden in a plastic bag, was discovered by a vagrant who was probably looking for food in the refuse bin. The explosive device could fortunately be defused before any damage was done. 
            God clearly intervened at the internationally-initiated Jesus March.  After a series of bad weather forecasts, Pastor Lazarus Chetty, the organizer, asked Christians via the CCFM radio station to pray for dry conditions. In spite of the negative weather prediction, ten thousand Christians from across the religious landscape converged on the CBD of the Mother City. God answered the prayers. Well after the crowds had dispersed, the first raindrops started to fall. 
            While the Jesus March crowd was praying in the historical Dutch Company Gardens, an old Muslim lady gave her life to Jesus at the famous Groote Schuur hospital a few kilometres away.  Christian workers had ministered to her after she confessed that she was having dreams of the broad and narrow way, with Jesus standing at the top of the steep narrow way waiting for her. This dream had been plaguing her for 50 years.

A satanic backlash and divine response
Satan seemed to mock the prayer march after he had failed to foil it. On the same evening, a car bomb detonated in Sea Point. The stolen car was strategically parked between the well-known Jewish and American restaurants New York Bagles and McDonalds.  Miraculously - one should say supernaturally - the damage to people and property was minimal. Satan thus lost the round.
            An unheralded meeting at the Zuid-Afrikaanse Gestig Museum a few days later on 15 June 2000 looked bound to be strategic in the spiritual realm. Thea van Schoor, a Christian worker from Durbanville, had met Louis Pasques, minister of the Baptist Church at the prayer meeting of pastors and pastors’ wives at the Atlantic Christian Assembly in Sea Point a week prior to this event. On short notice the City Bowl ministers’ fraternal decided to join the prayer occasion organised by Van Schoor. This was part of a tour by an American church group from Waco, Texas. In preparation of their two-week visit to the Mother City, the American group of young people had been praying for Cape Town for six months. The event of June 2000 at the historical venue also featured David Bliss, the director of the Andrew Murray Centre, and a group of young people from their centre in Wellington.

Combined Church Services   
An event with spiritual significance was a combined church service at the Cape Town Baptist Church and the English speaking Dutch Reformed Church on June 11, 2000. This was the culmination of the 10-day Pentecostal prayer meetings in the latter church.  Five churches of the City Bowl, whose ministers came together on a weekly basis, hereafter decided to have combined evening services from time to time. The evening service of Pentecost could be seen as the ushering in of this effort when the churches joined hands. The next occasion of the kind was scheduled for 10 September 2000. Here members of five City Bowl churches joined in prayer in a combined evening service in the Tafelberg NGK.  Thereafter, the combined Sunday evening church service became a monthly event until 2003. Later it was decided to have only three combined events per year. 
            The church at large seemed to take up the challenge to influence things at the Cape.  One effort was a three-day ‘mini Rustenburg’ from 22 to 24 August at the Huguenot Hall. The stated intention was to ‘turn the tide’ at the venue where Dutch Reformed Synods were usually held. For 30 September a summit was organised in Green Point, with the intention of working at a ten-year plan for the church to get their act together. At both occasions intercessors covered the events with prayer. The implementation of the plans left much to be desired.
            With a lack of perseverance curtailing many promising initiatives, the monthly pastors and pastors’ wives prayer meetings - under the leadership of Pastor Eddie Edson - was a sustaining factor of this endeavour, keeping up the momentum for many years.

Start of a new turning to Christ?
Eben Swart, the Western Cape Prayer coordinator, in a brochure that he titled Bridging the Gap, addressed the danger of fragmentation; various groups were doing their own thing. He also addressed the rift between different Christian factions. While he was praying, the words spirit of violence came through in a strong way. He passed the challenge on to church leaders to address the issue head-on at an oncoming Manenberg Citywide prayer event.
            The occasion in Manenberg on 2nd September 2000, was followed by a big evangelistic campaign immediately thereafter. The adjacent township of Hanover Park, along with nearby Gugulethu and Nyanga, had been important localities not only of killing and mugging, but also of spiritual warfare. John Mulinde of Uganda was the speaker at the Manenberg prayer event. In spite of continuous rain that would certainly have kept many away, about 3,000 believers gathered in a big tent. The occasion was very meaningful, especially because over a third of the audience consisted of Whites who were thus braving racial and other prejudices.  In the spiritual realm, intense warfare was waged. Many tears flowed in repentance and mutual acceptance.  
            Prophecies about Manenberg becoming a blessing to the city appeared to come to fruition when many gangsters helped fill a tent with 10,000 seats from Sunday 10 September 2000 – during an evangelistic campaign that was facilitated by Jerome Liberty and his team. It was perhaps problematic when he introduced the various gangs present in the big tent night by night as special guests, but if there is a case to be made for ‘die doel heilig die middele’ (the goal sanctifies the methods), here was one. The method bore fruit. The follow-up and discipling of those gangsters who went forward in an act of commitment, was a daunting task for the churches of the notorious crime-ridden township. A secular radio station, KFM, noted the short-term result, reporting on 15 September that there was not a single incident of violence in the notorious suburb in the week of the big evangelistic tent campaign.
          That Pastor Henry Wood was made responsible for the new fellowship at ‘Die Hok’, proved to be quite strategic. Pastor Wood impressively followed up the converts of the campaign. On 10 February 2001 a national television station, e-TV, reported this success story in their news bulletin. In the report the local police spoke of the former crime-ridden township having become relatively quiet.
          Die Hok and Green Pastures, along with other churches from Manenberg, were to play a prominent role in significantly reducing the area’s crime level in ensuing years.

The spiritual battle rages on
In October 2000 more PAGAD members were arrested and some of their leaders tried.  The tension in the Middle East had a spin-off, with big Islamic rallies being held at the Cape. The one on 14 October 2000 at the Green Point Stadium was counterproductive for the Islamic faith, as supporters damaged cars and property such as at McDonald’s, after the crowd had been hyped up at the rally against Americans and Jews.
          The prayers of God’s people - for instance that the tension between Muslims and Jews locally would not get out of control - were surely answered when a time bomb under the car of a Jewish man was discovered and defused before the device could cause any damage. However, a bomb explosion near the offices of the Democratic Party’s office of Kenilworth on 18 October kept the tension alive because the leader of that party, Tony Leon, was known to be a Jew. Was PAGAD getting a new lease of life? Muslim unity at the Cape seemed to be restored in the wake of the Middle East conflict – seemingly united against Israel and the Jews in general.

A flourish of prayer and missionary activity
A flourish of prayer and missionary activity towards the end of 2000 looked set to influence the country as a whole, especially since much of it was happening in the Mother City. More specifically, with regard to the unity of the churches in the City Bowl and the Atlantic Seaboard, there was visible evidence of change. Previously it had been very difficult to get the body of Christ to work together meaningfully for any length of time.
          A few City Bowl ministers who had been praying together on Thursday mornings since October 1995 approached the office of Mr Mark Wiley, the minister responsible for law enforcement in the Western Cape. They offered to pray for him, promising not to take more than ten minutes of his time. Wiley responded positively, whereupon a delegation of the pastors went to pray with him. A few months later however, Wiley resigned due to his inability to resolve the protracted dispute between taxi operators and the Golden Arrow Bus Company. The seriousness of the situation was thus highlighted even more. This dispute had kept the Cape Black township dwellers in suspense for months. Everything pointed to the fact that the spiritual battle was still raging at a significant pitch. 
            On 27 October 2000 the Ministers’ Fraternal of the Atlantic Seaboard organised a half-night of prayer. Wiley’s successor was Hennie Bester, who had been a school friend of Eben Swart, the Western Cape coordinator of Herald Ministries. The new provincial cabinet minister’s request - prayer from Christians - was a catalyst to send intercessors into action (see Appendix A). In answer to prayer, the people responsible for the bombs that had been plaguing the region were apprehended soon thereafter. 
                        20. Transformation of the Mother City prepared

            Although the Moravian denomination itself seemed to have dwindled into obscurity, the heritage of the early Moravians was once again at the cradle of a mighty movement of God across the world. A group of intercessors from America visited the East German village of Herrnhut in 1993. The group included a believer from St Thomas, the island to which the first two missionaries left in 1732. That group experienced a sovereign outpouring of God’s spirit as they prayed in the prayer tower of Herrnhut. This could possibly be seen as the beginning of the modern wave of prayer that swept around the world since then. The vision of the 24-hour prayer watch - that kept going in Herrnhut for 120 years - was rekindled in a big way towards the end of 1999. Like wildfire, the concept spread around the world. At the beginning of the year 2000 African leaders - spearheaded by Bennie Mostert from Pretoria and John Mulinde of Uganda - got together to attempt implementing the example of the Moravians in Africa.
Graham Power, a Cape businessman, who is a member of the board of Directors of the Western Province Rugby Football Union, saw the Transformations documentary video in March 2000, birthing in him a strong desire to see a prayer event at the headquarters of the Rugby Football Union in Newlands. The story of the Mafia-style drug lords who exercised such a dominating presence in certain cities reminded him of Cape Town. He promptly approached his co-directors for use of the biggest sports stadium of the Mother City. This was approved in August 2000. The Sentinel Group, that included George Otis of the well-known Transformation videos, staged a three-day conference at the Lighthouse Christian Centre in Parow with international speakers from 3 November 2000, followed by a citywide prayer meeting at an athletics stadium in Bellville on Sunday, 5 November. The meetings in Parow and Bellville were preceded by prayer events that not only coincided with a bout of spiritual warfare against the occult Satanist Halloween celebrations, but they were also part of a countrywide 40-day offensive of prayer and fasting for the continent. After the Parow and Bellville events of November 2000 the stage was soon set for a prayer event at the Newlands Rugby Stadium. 

Bombs discovered and defused
On Friday 3 November, two potentially destructive bombs were discovered and defused at a well-known shopping centre in Bellville. The bombs could have caused massive loss of life, had they detonated at the intended time a few kilometres from the venue of the prayer event in Parow. On the same day of the start of the prayer conference, the main alleged perpetrators of the pipe bomb planting were arrested. Reverend Trevor Pearce, who led the Community Transformation prayer initiative, stated that it could hardly have been co-incidence that the arrest of the surmised culprits happened at the time of the conference and that the 18 bombs, which had exploded in the preceding months, did not result in any loss of life. Nor could it have been mere co-incidence that pipe bombs were discovered under a snooker table at a house in Grassy Park on 6 November, a day after the citywide prayer event in Bellville. For five years not a single PAGAD pipe bomb detonated at the Cape. It is possible to say that transformation of the Mother City of South Africa received a major push on 3 November 2000.
            On the local level churches also seemed to be playing a role in bringing about peace. On Sunday 25 February 2001, it was reported on national television that local church leaders had brokered a peace accord between two gangs of Bonteheuwel, the Cisko Yakkies and the Americans.
          Eric Hofmeyer, a former gang leader, became a pastor after four years’ training at the Cape Town City Mission Bible College in Strandfontein. Hofmeyer, became a South African and World  weight-lifting champion over an extended period after starting off practising with broomsticks and bricks (Martindale, 2002:73). He used sport extensively to minister to young people when he started the ministry from the Burns Road Community Centre in Salt River in 1998.
          Hofmeyer also ministered to many a gangster in the infamous Pollsmoor prison, including Sollie Staggie, a lesser-known brother of the infamous twins Rashied and Rashaad. He had the joy of discipling many of these gangsters who committed their lives to the Lord. In the new millennium he linked up with Denzil Moses, who miraculously survived a gun shot from his brother who belonged o a rival gang (All four of his brothers belonged to different gangs). Adopting the name Adullam Ministries, Denzil Moses and Eric Hofmeyer worked together in communities, schools and with gangsters through the Cape Town City Mission.  Soon they operated in different schools, planting two churches in the process.
            The Transformations programme was closely aligned to prayer from the outset. It is no surprise that the 24-hour prayer watch was linked to a big prayer event scheduled for the Newlands Rugby Stadium on 21 March 2001. In the 21 days prior to the event more than 200 congregations joined in a prayer effort for the stadium meeting on a 24-hour basis. The event on 21 March 2001 seemed to usher in a new era. Because Newlands was too small for all the people who wanted to attend, several local churches used a satellite connection and big screens to allow more people to participate. Because CCFM and Radio Tygerberg radio stations also broadcast the event live and because it was a public holiday, many followed the prayers at home.

Missionary Explosion from the Cape
Much of the prayer endeavours of the early 1990s were connected to missionary work. Love Southern Africa events started in Wellington, taking over from the Western Cape Missions Commission. Pastor Bruce van Eeden coordinated Great Commission conferences and Pastor Paul Manne organized an annual missionary event. Almost all these efforts fizzled out towards the end of the 20th century.
        Pastor van Eeden proved the big exception in this regard. He had always wanted to see South Africans involved in missionary work. The Lord laid India and China on his heart. When one of his daughters found employment as a stewardess with South African Airways, he saw that as his chance to get involved himself. In 1995 he started a Mitchell’s Plain-based agency called Ten Forty Outreach, which concentrated on sending out short-term workers to India. For three months a year Pastor van Eeden would go and minister in India, partnering with Indian believers and taking with him volunteers from South Africa. In 10 years they were involved in the planting of 320 churches. There are now 160 Indian national evangelists and pastors who are linked to the missionary agency.
Cape Town’s anchor to the occult cut off?
The 2001 Newlands prayer event was bound to turn out to be a spiritual watershed. A special word from God that a long-time intercessor who has also been counselling former Satanists received on 21 March 2001 at the Transformation meeting, says it all:
‘During the prayer time God took me into intercession - I travailed much and I knew something was breaking in the spirit. I asked the Lord, „What is it Lord?”  He clearly showed me the Lady of Good Hope with her anchor. I then saw her anchor being cut off. God said that Cape Town’s soul had been anchored to her, that’s why we turned to drugs, prostitution, gangs, etc.
             Today this anchor was cut off and replaced with God’s anchor. I asked for scripture.  The Lord gave me Hebrews 6:19, 20
Now we have this hope as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul - it cannot slip and it cannot break down under whoever steps out upon it - a hope that reaches farther and enters into the very certainty of the Presence within the veil. Where Jesus has entered in for us in advance, a forerunner has become a High Priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.
Graham Power - a major mover of the Newlands event - had a dream in February 2002 that encouraged him to bring the stadium prayers to Southern Africa. That year the prayer day started to spread throughout the subcontinent: eight stadiums were involved with some 160,000 people attending. In 2003 and 2004, mass prayer events were held in sports stadiums throughout the African continent.  .
          An interesting dynamic, which was starting to get off the ground, was that missionaries, who had been working in other Southern African countries, started encouraging believers from the Cape Peninsula to become involved in missionary work. Locals like Georgina Kinsman from Mitchell’s Plain, who does not belong to the young generation, hardly needed any nudge to get involved in missionary work. In fact, she gave a major push for the Baptist Union to become active in reaching out to the under-evangelised and forgotten peoples of Namibia and the Northern Cape. Georgina Kinsman got going with church-planting in a powerful and blessed way.

Gangsterism and drug Abuse again
The arch enemy was bound to hit back with so many positive things, utilising gangsterism and drug abuse. This happened in Hanover Park in a big way. In that township it became so bad in the beginning of the new millennium that one had to fear getting into crossfire of rival gangs at any time of the day. Pastor Arthur Johnson of Elim Ministries, one of the local ministers who had been co-operating in Operation Hanover Park in 1992, was challenged to do something about it, writing letters to other church leaders and inviting them to join in a prayer march through the area. The result was not very encouraging in terms of other churches joining in, but he proceeded nevertheless with his own fellowship. God blessed their faithfulness and courage when the area quietened down significantly in answer to their prayers.

By the Scruff of the Neck
Sometimes God has to take people by the scruff of the neck to bring them into obedient submission just as he once did with Jonah. This happened to Michael Share, who was challenged to leave his work in the police force to start Cops for Christ at the turn of the millennium. After being involved in a raid, he was stranded in a shack with bullets flying past him. He experienced supernatural protection. Not a single bullet hit him. This was to him the wake-up call. Through the ministry of Cops for Christ he challenged Christians throughout South Africa to bring spiritual life and encouragement into police stations, when anarchy was threatening once again. Michael Share challenged Danie Nortje, a Cape policeman, around 2002 to assist him in getting Cops for Christ off the ground in the Western Cape.
            Supernaturally, God had to grab Danie Nortje after initial disobedience. After a boat accident off the coast at Camps Bay, during which he had to be rescued, he was admitted to Chris Barnard Memorial Hospital. At this time he sensed the renewed calling to be involved with Cops for Christ.
Fanie Scanlan was already the Superintendent of the Buitenkant Street Police Station in the Mother City when he was stabbed seven times, narrowly escaping death. This became the turning point in his life. Towards the end of 2003, it was my turn to be taken by the scruff of the neck. During the post-operative period after the removal of my cancerous prostate gland on 3 December 2003, I was challenged to stop looking for other people to try and get a 24-hour prayer watch going in the City Bowl.

Church-led Restitution?
The authors of Jericho Walls, the NUPSA mouth-piece, took an important step in the required direction in the run-up to the national elections of June 2, 1999. Confession for unbiblical traditions was suggested. This was followed up in February 2000 at the Cape, with remorse and confession and at places like Robben Island and the Kramat of SheikhYusuf. When would this be picked up or will the good start fizzle into oblivion as has happened on previous occasions? It seems that still no single denomination has started to implement concrete steps towards a practical repentant turn-around - for instance to consciously scrap church traditions that are unbiblical.

 21. The Quest for a Prayer Watch

          The American missionary Susan Hill arrived in the Mother City with a vision for prayer. It was only natural that she and her husband would be linked up with the prayer watch movement in 2002 when they came to settle in the Mother City. Susan Hill came into the picture as a possible coordinator for a prayer watch to be started in the City Bowl. From 2002 joint prayer events took place at the District Six Moravian Church every third Saturday of the month, which she later led.

District Six Moravian Church again
In 2002 President Mbeki announced that the Moravian Church building, which had been used as a gymnasium by the Cape Technikon, was to be returned to the denomination. Hendrina van der Merwe, a faithful City Bowl Afrikaner prayer warrior, had been praying for many years for a breakthrough towards renewed church planting in Bo-Kaap, and for a 24-hour watch to begin at the Moravian Church. With the origin of the modern prayer movement dating back to the Moravians of Herrnhut in 1727, this would be very appropriate. Hendrina van der Merwe hoped to be part of this prayer watch before her death. The Moravian Church Board was formally approached in October 2003. The request was approved, along with permission to have monthly meetings with Muslim background believers in their church building in District Six.
            The St Andrews Presbyterian Church was also considered for the purpose of a 24-hour prayer watch. Hendrina van der Merwe resided in this complex at this time as well as Swieg Nel, who got linked to the ministry of Straatwerk. The St Andrews church hall became the venue of a half night of prayer on the Islamic Night of Power in 2003. At this occasion, Trevor Peters, who worked as the security guard of the parking area, participated prominently. Increasingly, he became burdened to pray for the city. Unknown to many, Peters had been corresponding with Reverend Angeline Swart with regard to the use of the District Six Moravian Church. The Lord humbled Trevor, a former gangster and drug lord. He became a car guard of the parking area and tour guide at the historical Groote Kerk. God brought him into the main prayer force for the city. Later on, he also joined in the praying at the Cape Town Police Station in Buitenkant Street.

Run-up to a Continental Prayer Convocation
The Koffiekamer, once mooted as the venue for a 24-hour prayer watch, suddenly became a major channel of blessing when an Alpha Course started there. A special role in the transformation of the city was accorded to the Koffiekamer when many a vagrant was transformed by the power of the Gospel and prayer meetings for the city were held there every last Wednesday of the month.
          It was furthermore fitting that the prelude to a prayer convocation for the African continent from 1st to the 5th December 2003 at UWC, Bellville, took place on Robben Island. This was a follow-up of the ‘Cleansing South Africa’ event of September 2001.
          Just at a time when Dr Henry Kirby, a physician of Tygerberg Hospital and a great prayer warrior, ran into problems obtaining access to the famous island as part of the prayer convocation, a Muslim background believer contacted Radio CCFM. Was it merely coincidence that the author was present at the Radio CCFM studio when her fax arrived there? When I invited the young lady to our home for a preparatory talk with regard to a radio interview, I learned that she had been working on Robben Island for many years. Through her intervention, the necessary arrangements could be made for the prayer warriors, some of them coming from various African countries, to go and pray on the famous island.

Another eventful Week
When the movie The Passion of the Christ was released in March 2004, it was clear that this would be another event film. Hardly anybody suspected that its ripples would go around the world with so much speed. Objections by individual Roman Catholics and Jews only gave more publicity to the controversial film. Believers in Jesus Christ, ordinary cinema frequenters as well as people from all religions around the globe, were deeply moved as they witnessed the last 12 hours of Jesus Christ in the unusual movie. Pirate DVD’s sold like hot cakes, at the Cape and throughout the country. For Nur Rajagukguk, a missionary colleague who had worked in China years before, it was very special to watch the video version with two Uyghur women from China. Nur Rajagukguk had a special burden for the Uyghur, a Muslim tribe in the Northwest of the vast and populous country. For years she had prayed for those people without seeing any change. And now God brought some of them to Cape Town. Within months both Chinese women accepted Jesus as their Saviour.
            The film influenced the Middle East significantly. What is clear is that Satan must have been very angry because of the effect of the movie! On Monday, 22 March 2004, Israeli soldiers killed Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, a prominent leader and founder of Hamas, the Palestinian resistance force, bringing the Middle East to the brink of all-out war. Surprisingly, the immediate massive backlash, which was expected, did not materialise. The possible cause was the impact of The Passion of the Christ.  Many Muslims went to see the film because they ‘heard’ that it was anti-Jewish. Since they had been taught to resent the Jews, they wanted to see the film.
God used the movie to communicate the Gospel as rarely before. The very opposite spirit that motivated Muslims to go and view the film came through.  The message of loving your enemies, and Jesus praying to his Father to forgive his prosecutors - while still on the Cross - hit many a Muslim theatre-goer powerfully.  Quite strikingly, many Muslims hereafter seemed to start accepting the death and resurrection of Jesus. These are doctrines which are denied by orthodox Islam. That Jesus addressed God as his Father surely rattled many of them. In Muslim countries children learn in a nursery rhyme that God neither has a son, nor does he beget.

Transformation Africa!
Prayer events in the 58 nations and islands linked which are to the continent of Africa were held on 2 May 2004 in some 1100 stadiums. A 10-minute prayer was disseminated, which would have been offered all over Africa at Greenwich Meantime +2 hours. It could be accessed via e-mail in thirteen languages all over Africa.
The event of 2 May 2004, when African Christians were praying, was apt to impact the continent in a significant way. The theme running throughout the afternoon was that the time had come for the Dark Continent to become a light to the nations. In an inspiring message, the Argentine speaker Ed Silvoso led the millions of believers in stadiums across the continent through prayers of repentance, dedication and commitment. The Lord gave a vision to someone, which was shared with the Newlands crowd. The time for the fulfilment of Isaiah 66:12 had come. Although this particular word from the scriptures refers to Jerusalem, the speaker applied it to Africa, quoting: ‘For thus says the Lord: „Behold, I will extend prosperity to her like a river, and the wealth of the nations like an overflowing stream.” Two items that recurred again and again in the prayers were HIV/AIDS and poverty relief.

The 7 DAYS Initiative
As a follow-up strategy of Transformation Africa, the 7-Days initiative was launched. On the verge of the 2004 event in stadiums all over Africa, Daniel Brink of the Jericho Walls Cape Office sent out the following communiqué: ‘...From Sunday May 9th thousands of Christians all over South Africa will take part in a national night and day prayer initiative called „7 Days”.  The goal was to see the whole country covered in continuous prayer for one year from 9 May 2004 to 15 May 2005. At relatively short notice, communities in South Africa were challenged to each take 7 days to pray 24 hours a day. The initiative started with the Western Cape taking the first seven weeks. Daniel Brink, the regional organizer, invited believers of the Cape Peninsula to ‘proclaim your trust that, when we pray, God will respond. Declare your trust that if we put an end to oppression and give food to the hungry, the darkness will turn to brightness. Pray that houses of prayer will rise up all over Africa as places where God’s goodness and mercy is celebrated in worship and prayer, even before the answer comes.
            Global Prayer Watch, the Western Cape arm of Jericho Walls, filled the first 7 days with day and night at the Moravian Church complex in District 6, Cape Town, starting at 9 o’clock in the evening on May 9.  Every two hours around the clock a group of musicians would lead the ‘Harp and Bowl’ intercessory worship whereby the group would pray around scripture. In another part of the complex intercessors could pray or paste prayer requests in the ‘boiler room’.
Jericho Walls challenged ‘millions of believers’ all over the world ‘to seek the face of the Lord and ask him to fill the earth with his glory as the waters cover the seas’ (Habakkuk 2:14) from 6th to the 15th May 2005. Young people were encouraged to do a ‘30 second Kneel Down’ on Friday 13 May and to have a whole night of prayer in the run-up to the Global Day of Prayer on Saturday 14 May, a ‘Whole night for the Whole World.
What a joy it was for the fervent prayer warrior Hendrina van der Merwe to be present on the 9th May 2004 in the Moravian Church. However, she was neither to experience a spiritual breakthrough towards new church planting in Bo-Kaap nor the start of a 24-hour Prayer Watch in the City Bowl. She somehow impacted Swieg Nel, who now started to attend the Cape Town Baptist Church. She went to be with her Lord on the 31st of December 2004.
             22. Transformation takes shape

It was exciting to see how in different parts of the country, the vision ‘adopt a cop’ - prayer for the police force - took off. It was surely in answer to prayer that Cops for Christ was started. The group saw themselves as stimulators and co-ordinators for prayer. Already at the City-wide prayer events of the late 1990s and the early years of the new millennium, Captain René Matthee was a regular speaker, challenging believers to pray especially for the police. Kallie Hanekom, Danie Nortje and Michael Share challenged churches in the city area and further afield to pray concretely. They developed a system whereby a simultaneous prayer request could be sent to Christians with mobile phones. Believers were invited to come and pray at police stations. The Cops for Christ branch of Atlantis on the West Coast received countrywide prominence, such as in the organization and implementation of the 24-hour week of prayer from 16 to 23 May 2004 in their area. Crime reported to the local police station dropped significantly in the months thereafter.

Police Stations become Prayer Venues
It was exciting to see how in different parts of the country, the vision ‘adopt a cop’ - prayer for the police force - took off. It was surely in answer to prayer that Cops for Christ was started. The group saw themselves as stimulators and co-ordinators for prayer. Already at the City-wide prayer events of the late 1990s and the early years of the new millennium, Captain René Mathee was a regular speaker, challenging believers to pray especially for the police. Kallie Hanekom, Danie Nortje and Michael Share challenged churches in the city area and further afield to pray concretely. They developed a system whereby Christians with cell phones could be sent a simultaneous prayer SMS. Churches were invited to come and pray at police stations. Countrywide the Cops for Christ branch of Atlantis on the West Coast was prominent, for example in the organization and implementing of the 24 hour week of prayer from 16 to 23 May 2004 in their area. Crime reported at the local police station dropped significantly in the months hereafter.
        A special variation occurred in the violent suburb of Elsies River. Monica Williams, a compassionate Christian of the area, took it upon herself to see her suburb transformed through prayer. Reacting to a dream, she approached the local police and started caring especially for juvenile delinquents and rape victims. Within months, corruption within the local police force was exposed. In nearby Ravensmead, Lea Barends endeavoured to combat crime and domestic violence through prayer. In September 2003, she approached Freddie van Wyk of the local police station, with the request to come and pray for the staff. He was excited and soon a prayer watch started there, with five women attending every Thursday. By May 2004 ten women were attending. Crime in Ravensmead dropped dramatically and drug lords were apprehended.
          Mqokeleli Mntanga helped to facilitate unified prayer among churches in the township of Mbekweni, Paarl. The churches there started a house of prayer at the local police station.

“7 Days” Prayer initiative for the SA Police Service
The Christian Police Association (CPA) prayed from the 13th to the 19th of September 2004 for the South African Police Service and its members as well as for the crime situation in South Africa. It followed their annual National CPA conference.  One of the speakers was Amanda Buys from Kanaan ministries. René Mathee, a police captain from Paarl, wrote in her report:  ‘Amanda is one of the forerunners on intersession and spiritual warfare in our nation.  She was a vessel that God used to inspire us enormously!!! We got a Word from the Lord for the Police in South Africa and it is as follows:
The Lord says that the Police are a gift to the nation like the Trojan Horse.
But... the enemy is hidden inside the horse!!!
          Another concern for the country is that ever since South Africa made a covenant with Haiti, the voodoo capital of the world, witchcraft flooded our nation. We experience a great onslaught of witchcraft in the SAPS currently. 
          We, as the children of God must learn how to stand against the enemy and all its powers... We as Christians must rise up and take our places as watchmen on the walls!!!  We cannot turn our faces away!!  We must plead God for mercy...’
        They started to pray very early every Monday morning. People from over the whole of South Africa were involved in praying for the organization.  The communities of different parts of the country joined in this prayer initiative.
        In the Western Cape the Province was they divided into four areas.   Every area had a particular day to pray. In the Boland area they prayed for murder and rape, as this is the problem crime in the area. They also prayed for Operation Neptune, a police base in Hermanus that investigated abalone smuggling in the Hermanus – Gansbaai area. They prayed that God would remove this seat of Satan, as “Neptune” is a sea god.  They also prayed for the abalone smuggling that takes place in this area.  They prayed that God would expose the Police members that are involved in these syndicates. Seven members of the Police from Gansbaai, Hermanus and area were arrested hitting front-page news in the local newspapers!!!
The Provincial Commissioner said that corruption in the Police would not be tolerated and it would be rooted out!!! They prayed that this statement would become reality in the South African Police Service, trusting that the Lord would expose and remove more corrupt police members and that God would cleanse the criminal justice system!
        On Thursday, 30 September 2004, during the screening of the weekly TV documentary programme Special Assignment, a number of police members were exposed for their involvement in corruption and bribery regarding prostitution.  A few of the presenters of this programme acted as spies and filmed police members where they bribed people to pay fines; otherwise they would be arrested as they assumed that prostitution is illegal. A year later the same programme highlighted that 50,000 policemen had been charged with corruption in 2004.

Prayer at Die Losie
When we were still wondering whether it was feasible to go ahead with plans to have a 24/7 week of prayer in the City Bowl at the beginning of February 2005, Trevor Peters phoned the author. This happened just as my own faith had started to wilt on the matter. It turned out that he had been corresponding for some time with leaders of the Moravian Church about the use of the complex in District Six.
        At the monthly prayer for the City on Saturday 8 January (2005), it was decided to press ahead with another week of prayer from 30 January to 6 February as a next step towards the goal of a 24-hour Prayer Watch in the City Bowl. Trevor Peters would find out whether the venue was available for that event and our friend Beverley Stratis, who has a prayer burden for the city that stretched over many years, was asked to get in touch with Superintendent Fanie Scanlan to see if a room in the Buitenkant Street Police Station was available as a plan B.
        One thing led to the other within a week, until it was finalized that the week of prayer would be held at Moravian Hill, to be followed thereafter with a prayer watch at the Buitenkant Street police station. Superintendent Scanlan put to our disposal a room called Die Losie, a former Freemason lodge in the police station. This was a significant step in the spiritual realm. On Sunday 23 January, 2005 the station was anointed and prayed over, signalling the victory of the Lord in the Mother City. (Until about 2003 the command structures of the famous/notorious Caledon Square police station had been firmly in the hand of Freemasons.) In fact, at the beginning of 2005 there was hardly any police station around where there was not a committed Christian in command.) As we were praying in the third story board room, I suddenly noticed that I had the Tafelberg Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) opposite me. I was reminded that this was the church from which Ds Koot Vorster, a DRC minister, the brother of a Prime Minister and a top Broederbonder, operated. I had heard that he was the one responsible for yet another request to the government in 1948/9 to put the prohibition of racially mixed marriages on the statute books. (At some stage the Lord had to deliver me personally from resentment when I heard that the denomination dug in their heels when the government under Prime Minister P.W. Botha was ready to repeal the law in the late 1970s. This had effectively blocked our possible return to South Africa.) Up there in the blue room of the police station it was my privilege to express forgiveness in a prayer once again.
        After the week of prayer at Moravian Hill a few of us followed it up with prayer every Wednesday morning at the Cape Town Central police station. Apparently this gave us credibility with the leadership of the station. A little more than a year later, in May 2006, our request on very short notice to have 10 days of 24-hour prayer in the Losie in the period just prior to the Global Day of Prayer, was granted without any ado.

Transformation Action
Trevor Pearce and John Thomas are two clergymen who were in more than one sense the face of Cape Transformation over the years by becoming involved on the practical level. As the husband of the directress of the CCFM radio station, Rev. Thomas utilised the medium to the full to pass on the good news of churches getting involved with the poor and needy of the Fish Hoek Valley.  Specifically with regard to schooling and HIV/AIDS, Reverend Pearce was very much a pivot in an attempt to get the church and the business world partnering, in order to change the former squatter camp at Westlake. Also in the Helderberg and in Manenberg, concerted prayer was followed by action, which changed the respective communities significantly for the better. The annual Transformation events in sports stadiums were followed by a ‘week of bounty’ where the more affluent churches were challenged and encouraged to share with those on the other side of the economic divide.
It was also interesting how traditional churches were affected during the transformation of communities. Already for many years the annual student mission events, such as at Stellenbosch, formed the vanguard for other Christian music, introducing contemporary praise music to some Afrikaans churches.  The Dutch Reformed Church of Wellington North drifted quite far from their tradition when they staged a Bambalela festival at the beginning of 2005. The prayer meeting, which started at 6 a.m. on the Friday morning, was the start of a 50 hour prayer chain. A number of farm workers participated. Rev F. J. Human was quoted as saying that the Bambalela festival was only the beginning of a process, urging people to get their lives in order and to start caring for others.

Restitution made practical
Dr Robbie Cairncross was very much a catalyst in getting a group of Cape church leaders to visit Argentina in 1999. At that occasion Pastor Martin Heuvel of the Fountain Christian Centre in Ravensmead was challenged to apply the principal of restitution to the South African set-up. 
Martin Heuvel, saw the need to make restitution practical. He initiated shops run by Christian volunteers, where all sorts of second-hand clothing and other utensils could be purchased cheaply. This idea was developed in different suburbs, taking on board various ideas of skills training that were already running for some time to help the homeless and the unskilled unemployed, such as the initiative called The Carpenter’s Shop in the Mother City. The most advanced venture in this regard is possibly the Living Hope Community Centre in Muizenberg using the acronym H.O.P.E. - „Helping Other People Earn”. Apart from providing healthy meals and ablution facilities, spiritual direction is given concurrently with skills training. Furthermore HIV/AIDS workshops are run together with medical services, along with access to social services.
          Pastor Heuvel’s efforts to get White church leaders to move beyond mere oral confession and especially towards restitution for the evils of apartheid took more than two years. Some of these personalities, who were challenged, had been involved with the prayer movement in the country for a long time. In 2002 Pastor Heuvel approached Charles Robertson, a prayer warrior of many years standing, and the catalyst of the monthly prayer concerts at the Cape. Here he found a prepared heart. This finally led to the establishment of the Foundation for Church-led Restitution, where believers from different races and church backgrounds met from time to time. They started to discuss possibilities to nudge the church towards meaningful restitution, especially to address and rectify the wrongs of apartheid.
            The initiative of Charles Robertson for church-led restitution may be a possible next step on the part of Christians. The implementation of real unity on biblical grounds in the spirit of the person and example of Jesus - without semantics and bickering around peripheral issues like baptism and preaching by women – seems to be still some distance away. The Church’s hesitancy to acknowledge collective guilt in the doctrinal bickering that led to the emergence of Islam and to the maltreatment of Jews by Christians, appears to be a major stumbling block. Such a measure would amount to a significant step in the required direction.

A bright future in spite of the general gloom?
The verse ‘If my people humble themselves and pray ... I will heal their land’ (2 Chronicles 7:14), is very much a biblical promise. A bright future is therefore nevertheless a real possibility in spite of a pervasive gloom in some quarters. We are thus able to remain positive in spite of a persistent malaise. If we repent as a country of our godless laws and practices - also those of the period under our new government - we are sure to witness a new turning to Christ.
          And yet, the church has learnt that there is power in prayer. Prayer is the key to change. Because of prayer, we may still expect a bright future for the Mother City of South Africa. The prospect of Cape Town as a blessing to the continent is real in spite of all the hick-ups. 
As Christians of 170 nations around the world prepared for 15 May 2005, Jericho Walls passed on a ‘dream’: ‘The dream is that after the Global Day of Prayer, people will start putting their prayer into action for at least 3 months, by getting involved in their communities, by getting their hands dirty and starting to serve, by starting to live the love of Christ in practical ways instead of just talking about it. A helping hand is all that is necessary.’ Christians were asked to pray for a world-wide movement of generosity to come into existence. Pray that the church will be passionately in love with her future Bridegroom, and passionately involved with His work on earth.’ 
            Satan gave notice that he is not happy with the prayer offensive. After four-and- a-half quiet years in respect of pipe bombs, a device destroyed a home in Manenberg – of all places – on the eve of the Global Day of Prayer. Another pipe bomb detonated in Beacon Valley, Mitchell’s Plain, a few days after the event. Three little children were killed. It gave little comfort that the targeted buildings were major dens of drug merchants. However, thereafter it was quiet again in this regard.

The need of unity in Christ
Already in 1979 Professor John De Gruchy gave some direction, which is still valid and very much needed: ‘In order for the church to be there for all the peoples of the land, it has to rediscover its unity in Christ. It cannot do this through either cheap reconciliation or superficial ecumenism. It must recognize that the „middle wall of partition” has been torn down in Christ and that …Christ has destroyed the barriers between black and white, Englishman and Afrikaner, rich and poor. The tremendous significance of this act of reconciliation has yet to be realised within the South African church… The struggle of the church is impossible without the power of the Holy Spirit, for it is God alone who can liberate the church and equip it for its task. But God requires more than passivity. He requires obedient discipleship; … it requires a spirituality, which combines reliance upon the power of the Holy Spirit with a wholehearted effort to do God’s will in the world through that power.’
The unity affected by the prayer movement and the process of transformation augurs well for the future. Every South African Christian has reason to praise God that the Global Day of Prayer on the 15th of May 2005 had its origins in the Mother City of South Africa. But there is still much to do, and this is a major challenge to Christians, to translate faith into action!


An interesting dynamic took place in two Cape townships, Hanover Park and Parkwood, in the run-up and aftermath of the First Global Day of Prayer, May 2005. At the preparatory event for the Newlands Rugby Stadium, I met Bishop Clarke, the leader of a Pentecostal denomination and also the residing minister of Parkwood. This resulted in the clergyman sharing the wish to have a course in Muslim Awareness and loving outreach at his church. This did not happen immediately, but the author was invited to a combined event of the denomination on 4 May 2005, where the issue of the drug ‘tik’ was addressed. Various ministers committed themselves to tackle the vice in their respective communities. Unfortunately, little seems to have happened thereafter in concrete terms.
            At the Newlands event on Pentecost Sunday 2005, I shared briefly about the 1992 Operation Hanover Park (see page 26??), challenging the audience to pray and get involved in the fight against ‘tik’.
Prayer against satanist Infiltration                                                                                        Whereas the apartheid regime government had an obsession with race laws, the secular government since 1994 legislated against it. The new regime however appeared to have taken sexual immorality on board; passing laws that give the impression that homosexuality, abortion and prostitution are the most normal things in the world. Atheist and even satanist infiltration in the government had to be suspected. The efforts between 1995 and 1998 to get religious broadcasting banished – albeit that the impression was given that all small radio stations were under scrutiny – tend to fuel that suspicion. During 2006 there was another attempt to remove Radio Pulpit, a station that was broadcasting nationally, from the airwaves.                                                                                                                                          But also within denominations interfaith was gaining ground so that the unique features of Jesus were gradually eroded. Parallel to this, acceptance of homosexuality was gaining ground at a rapid pace, notably in the Anglican and Dutch Reformed denomination. A move by concerned pastors of the Cape Town City Bowl led to a declaration to be read in churches at Pentecost 2004 that included the sentence ‘We implore Christians to observe marriage as the ultimate and unique expression of the relationship between one man and one wife.’ It was generally felt that a status confessionis had been reached. The Church had to speak out against the sinful practice of homosexuality as she failed to do with regard to apartheid. So to speak at the last minute, the public reading of the declaration in the churches from pulpits was postponed at the request of the Groote Kerk ministers, not to jeopardize the discussion at their General Synod, which was to be held in October 2004. The decision at that synod in Hartenbos was however nowhere unambiguous, merely appealing to church members to be loving and not judgmental towards homosexuals. However, the lack of comment on the actual practice was leaving a loophole which was to ferment causing trouble a few months later.                                                     Matters came to a head when the Constitutional Court ruled shortly thereafter in November 2004 that gay marriages were not a violation of the constitution. Pastors could thus theoretically be charged if they refused to marry lesbians or homosexuals. The spokesman of the South African Council of Churches (SACC) added to the confusion in the television discussion. This troubled Rowina Stanley, the prayer coordinator of the Woodstock Assemblies of God sufficiently to bring this up for prayer at the monthly Prayer for the City event on 4 December, 2004 outside the District Six Moravian Church. Prayer against satanist and homosexual infiltration into the Church came on the prayer agenda for 2005. But that was not the only battle to be engaged in 2005. Sunrise monthly prayer resumed on Signal Hill in 2005.
A pyrrhic Victory?                                                                                                                        The gay lobby showed exceptional efficiency during 2006. All odds were stacked against them to get same sex marriages legalised. Almost all the major religious groups - with the lonely exception the spokesman for the SACC – and traditional leaders came out against a law that had no scriptural and popular backing. Very cleverly the gay lobby played the card of discrimination, which in South Africa found very eager and sensitive ears because of the heritage of apartheid. They managed to get the ANC, which had a massive majority in Parliament, on their side. Evangelical Christians had organised very well under the leadership of the Marriage Alliance, but they could never win without the backing of the ruling ANC. The law allowing same sex marriages took effect on 1 December 2007. The question remained: was the gay victory pyrrhic?
In Parliament Rev Kenneth Meshoe, the leader of the African Christian Demodratic Party (ACDP), warned that the country was inviting God’s wrath through the passing of this law. This seemed to get a prophetic dimension when crime and violence spiralled in the first two months of 2007, despite the vitriolic assurance by the State President that crime was not out of control. On the flip side, this seemed to be God’s way of stirring thousands to prayer in a way reminiscent of 1994 when the country seemed to be heading for a bloodbath of terrific dimensions. God has already raised people to pray for the removal of the gruwel, the abomination, as Cedric Evertson, a prayer warrior saw the new law.
When only Murray Bridgman was there alone with me on Signal Hill for our monthly prayer event of 2 December, I was initially somewhat disappointed. We were in the clouds, but not in a pleasant way, cold and wet. Murray had so much wanted to introduce me to Cedric! A cell phone call was enough to get Cedric to join us for prayer simply in the car. How exciting it was to hear from Cedric how the Lord has been leading him. The Holy Spirit touched his heart to stand in the gap like a Moses on behalf of the nation. To this end he would go to Tygerberg man alone to pray there in the morning, three days a week.
We decided to relocate our prayer meeting to Tygerberg for Saturday, 3 March 2007 and let Cedric lead the group in prayer. There the fighting ‘gloves’ were put on as we prayed for all laws that encourage sexual immorality and promiscuity to be turned around as the immoral apartheid laws had to be removed from the statute books! There was one big difference though. We did not want to wait another forty years! And we were determined to continue to pray for a revival, which we see as the best counter, the ultimate answer to the problems of gangsterism, drug addiction, crime and violence.

In the City Bowl things started moving towards the end of 2005 when the Cape Town Baptist Church agreed to host a week-end ‘Experiencing God’, the title taken from the well-known book of Henry Blackaby on fairly short notice. As part of the preparations, a 24-hour prayer event took place in that church from 18h on Friday 3 February, 2006. This was the first time that this was successfully run in the City Bowl for many years. The experience made a deep impression on Swieg Nel, the prayer co-ordinator, who now brought one challenge after the other to the church. Starting with inviting congregants to come and pray from 8h to 18h on an April Saturday, extended praying happened at the church hereafter almost every day till 3 June 2006.
An interesting development transpired at the historic St Stephen’s Dutch Reformed Church. When the midday pray-ers came to the Koffiekamer one Friday, they were disturbed by noise above them. They heard that a night club had just moved into the premises above them, which is situated at the back of the church. This was enough reason to pray more seriously for the Lord to move in the congregation, which had been negatively in the news in 2005. At the beginning of 2006 Kowie Smith, a retired army chaplain and a prayerful clergyman, was appointed to serve St Stephen’s as interim minister. As one of the first things he endeavoured to see coming off the ground was a prayer room.  It was a special blessing when the 2006 City Bowl Global Day of Prayer was held at the historic St Stephen’s Church. As Kowie Smith was driving through the city one day, he experienced a special challenge to pray for Cape Town. The congregation had decided to do the Experiencing God course. They wanted to get involved where God had started to work through his Spirit.

In May 2006 one of the little shops on Bree Street underneath the main sanctuary of St Stephen’s, the one adjacent to the Koffiekamer, number 106, became vacant. A member of the church council suggested that it should not be rented out again, but rather be used for prayer. They dived into Rick Warren’ brainchild of ‘40 days of purpose driven life’ in the first quarter of 2007. For the traditional beginning of the year prayer meeting of the church it was furthermore decided to link up with the Jericho Walls-sponsored week. This turned out to be a special event in the spiritual realms with two other City churches participating, apart from envisaged 24-hour prayer at the Central Police Station.
At the latter venue a few believers had been praying every Wednesday morning. A prayer drive where participants prayed the Word in the run-up to the 2006 Global Day of Prayer - coming from different directions – converged at the City Central police station, gathering in the Losie, the former free mason lodge. God used this event to touch at least one person in a special way. Wim Ferreira had been a transport engineer working with the City Council. He was challenged to resign from his position to concentrate on prayer for the City. He was however invited to work with ?? Arnolds, the Deputy Mayor of the Metropolis. The Lord soon challenged Ferreira to start a 24-hour prayer at the Civic Centre premises. A few months further on, a regular Friday prayer time was happening in one the offices linked to that of the Mayor. Before long, a trickle of workers from all walks of life was coming to faith in Jesus as their Lord as a result of these prayers. The Lord also put on Ferreira’s to pray for the unity of the body of Christ.
At the Friday prayer of WEC International/Friends from Abroad on 30 March 2007 led to a once-off relocation of the prayer venue scheduling the one of 13 April to the Foreshore Home Affairs premises. There some immediate needs were identified. The question arose whether the Body of Christ in the City Bowl could get challenged to address some of the problems and needs. At the Friends from Abroad meeting of 17 April in Parow, the author was given the right of way to arrange an ad hoc meeting with a few City Bowl pastors who are involved with foreigners in some way. In a sequel to this meeting, held on 4 May at the Straatwerk facility at St Andrews Presbyterian Church, Green Point, it was decided to invite more churches and pastors to get on board as part of 90 Days of compassionate action, soon after the 2007 Global Day of Prayer.
We continued with efforts to get Capetonian believers to pray together. This proved to be very difficult. At the 2009 Global Day of Prayer in the Groote Kerk, at which the Mayor, Mr Dan Plato, was prayed for, there were more foreigners than believers from local churches present.

A Story of God changing Townships
Bishop Peter Sekhonyane already operates as evangelist for 25 years in the township Orange Farm where he has planted 8 churches over the past few years. There are 1,5 million people living in Orange Farm, situated between Soweto and Sebokeng. Since the 1980’s and the beginning of the 1990’s, he had a prayer network in 28 cities/towns in South Africa. Peter became more and more frustrated. All the evangelisation led to few salvations, and only a few new believers settled down in a local congregation. After a meeting with Jericho Walls International in May 2004, Peter asked for a tent that can seat 300 people. The plan was to plant a 24-hour prayer watch in each of the 20 sectors (zones and out villages) of Orange Farm, to saturate the township with prayer, and then again start evangelising, whilst the 24-hour prayer watches continue. Shortly after this they put up the tent in Zone 1. For three weeks they intensively trained Christians of all churches on prayer and the principles of 24-hour prayer. After three weeks they decided to move the tent to the next zone. So they slowly started to repeat the process. In August 2004 Judea Harvest donated the first tent as an experiment. Two months later, in October 2004, after 7 such 24-7-365 prayer watches were already up and running (at an average of 15 hours per day), they decided to fill all the hours of the day in all 7 prayer watches for one week! By Saturday Peter went to the police station to ask how it went crime-wise during that week. According to their statistics something remarkable had happened: in 7 of the 20 zones there was nearly no crime – exactly the 7 in which 24-7 prayer was going on!
By December 2004 there were already 3 tents available to plant 24-7 prayer watches. By June 2005, the 16th prayer watch started running. Some of these watches now literally run 24 hours day-and-night. Meanwhile a tent was donated to be used in Cape Town, and another one in Soweto. With the 4 tents that have been used until now, 20 prayer watches were planted within 10 months. During this time there were 26 watches established in the township, with at least one in each of the 20 extensions and out-villages of Orange Farms. 
Suddenly something special started to happen. People from townships from across the country asked for help. Just in April and May 2005, Peter and his team received 4-6 people each from Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal, the Cape Flats, the Free State, Soweto and Zimbabwe to train and equip. These groups came for a week or two to experience for themselves what is happening and to receive training. Afterwards they returned home to start similar 24-7-365 prayer watches in their own areas.
During the first 13 months (by September 2005), through his seminars, on-site equipping of intercessors and the help of some other people and leaders all over the country, 74 watches were established, of which 38 are already running 24 hours every day. Peter organized a national conference in Orange Farms from 4 to 13 November 2005.
What are the consequences of all these prayers? Crime is declining in the townships. The Police asked Peter and his team once to come and help in one of the out villages where crime and violence were rampant. Peter took a tent there and started a prayer watch. After about two weeks, crime declined rapidly and came under control!
A second encouraging thing started to happen. People came to the Lord as a result of these prayer watches. Prayer is taken to people, and some are being prayed for in their homes! It looks as if the number of salvations is now more than with previous evangelisation outreaches! The positive part is that significant numbers of new believers can now be discipled as they come to pray at the watch venue regularly. Their chances to back-slide are thus reduced. It is also surprising to see that most of the people coming to the Lord are young adults.

Of all countries Indonesia was possibly impacted most through the first Global Day of Prayer
Transform World (TW) 2005, was an event sponsored by the Indonesian National Prayer Network, Indonesian Churches and an association of Christian institutions in Indonesia. This was held on 1 to 5 May 2005. Graham Power, the initiator of the global prayer event, saw this event as a link to the first Global Day of Prayer.
Five hundred leaders from fifty-five nations attended. A ‘catalytic impact’ arose out of an atmosphere of humility, which enabled the Lord to have his way. The great cultural diversity within the context of the Lord's transforming global moves was most compelling.
This developed into a special and joyous opportunity to fellowship and network with likeminded believers from a broad mix of nations, generations and churches - plus hearing stories of what God is doing around the world. One participant expressed his delight at "Relationally connecting with new friends of the Kingdom who will become collaborators over the next 10-20 years, as we together seek the expansion of the reign of God on this planet."
TW Indonesia 2005 ended with the start of the National Prayer Conference, on the 5th of May, a four hour prayer gathering in the national stadium with 120 000 people and broadcast into 76 cities with an estimated audience of more than ten million.  For many international participants the highlight was joining the Indonesians in the stadium, and observing first-hand the growing sense of prayer for their nation to become all that God intends.
A torch "was lit" on ascension day for the commencement of the 10 days of 24 hour prayer around the Globe. Over 150 nations prepared to join in the first ever Global Day of Prayer over an 18 hour time span on the 15th May."

Possible Additions:
From the mid-1960s a local revival was taking place in Kwasiza Bantu in Natal. The start of the revival could possibly be located to the prayer of a young woman in the Zulu congregation, after she had interrupted the sermon of Erlo Stegen, a German background preacher.  She had just been converted three months before. Stegen recorded the incident as follows: 'Tears were streaming down her face as she said, "O Mfundisi, please stop"... Astonished I asked: "Yes, what's wrong?" She replied, "May I pray?” Somewhat unsure what to do with a newly converted person suddenly getting up, stopping the service and wanting to pray, Stegen decided to give her the benefit of the doubt. ‘I did not know whether to allow it... But then I looked at her and I thought, "Well, she isn't deceiving us, she seems to be serious."  The simple prayer of the young woman seemed to penetrate the throne of heaven in a special way. 
Stegen himself was changed and hereafter evidently completely accepted by the Zulus! This itself amounted to a breakthrough! In due course, people from different races were worshipping together at Kwasiza Bantu, which was quite revolutionary for the country at that time. The location of this 'revolution' on the countryside, apparently did not trouble the government. Surprisingly the government did little to curb the ministry. Yet, Kwasiza Bantu knocked the bottom out of apartheid’s theory that different races could not have close fellowship together without friction. In due course daughter fellowships developed all over the country. Near to Malmesbury in the Boland a related work started on a farm that turned out to be a blessing to many.
Surfing Gospel Seed[5]
The New Covenant Church at Kommetjie that tragically lost its pastor - Pastor Kirk Cottrell - after a surfing accident in 2002, has recovered by 2006, seeing many lives changed under their new pastor, Julian Duguid.  Kirk Cottrell had left his surfing ministry in Florida (USA), thereafter joining an existing Christian surfing ministry along the South African coast. Julian and his wife Monica had been at the church and ministering in a local squatter camp when Kirk Cottrell passed away. The Duguids were the third family to attend the church, and the couple had finished fours years of training at the Bible Institute of South Africa in Kalk Bay. Subsequently the couple was invited to get involved with the ministry of the US-initiated Calvary Chapel.
The congregation in Kommetjie was invited to teach the children at the primary school across the street from their church. The principal - a believer - allowed Monica to teach every class once a week. Although attendance is optional, only 15 of the 500 pupils decided not to attend. Many learners are of Muslim, Jewish, or New Age backgrounds. After the challenging argumentative beginning, Monica replied that all who call on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, will be saved. As the school children’s questions were answered, many of them made a commitment to Christ.
The church itself developed into a believers’ meeting with a strong missions prayer focus. Because surfing is a way of life for many locals, it has continued to be a powerful outreach tool. Tich Paul, a famous S.A. surfing champion, was touched by Kirk Cottrell’s life and death. The result was a coordinated effort by Tich and other prominent surfers from the church to reach the entire surfing community.

Experiencing God
In 1982 Don and Lena Gibson introduced the North American-developed programme of Bible Study ‘Experiencing God’ at the Pinelands Baptist Church. Johnson was a member of this congregation who got involved with the Ebenhaezer fellowship in Grassy Park. The programme had deep influences all around the world, but also in various Baptist Churches of South Africa. The effect of the programme made such an impact on the denomination that the Baptist Union was keen to see more congregations challenged. On quite short notice the Cape Town Baptist Church agreed to host Don and Lena Gibson with a team over the week-end 17- 19 February, 2006. This had the effect of blowing new spiritual life into the church when more than 50 people enrolled for the weekly follow-up Bible Study over a period of 12 weeks. That there was also an effort to facilitate different language groups and get the ‘Experiencing God’ material available in Afrikaans, French and Portuguese, stimulated a new interest in reaching out to foreigners in the Cape Peninsula.
Parallel to the ‘Experiencing God’ week-end, there was also a divine move of God leading to the establishment of a missionary alliance called Friends from Abroad. At the end of 2005 the author and his wife had been thrown into a major crisis, leading to their resignation as leaders of the Muslim Outreach team of WEC International per 31 July 2006. They were still looking for God’s direction for their future when Shipley Jacobs, a colleague of OM, started working with them a few days in the week. He had been challenged to reach out lovingly and caringly to foreigners. (Already in 2003 it seemed as if the Lord was leading us as a couple more and more to a ministry to refugees and other foreigners. Already in November of that year we were privileged to baptize a believer from Rwanda in our pool. We worked closely with Shaun Waris, a believer and missionary worker from Pakistan, whom the Lord used to lead a few people from the group of informal traders to faith in Jesus Christ. We were privileged to do the same with two Chinese students in the first half of 2005.) God used the crisis of belief, notably through the internal problems within our own team, to take us back to the challenge of the foreigners.

Black Africa blesses the City
The initial euphoria after the 2001 Newlands event was not followed by a slump, but a gradual deterioration of the excitement of the day ran parallel to a decrease in eagerness for united prayer. By 2005 the big gaps on the stand – in spite of great costs incurred to hire buses and trains to bring in believers from the economically disadvantaged areas, became an embarrassment to the organisers. For 2006 the much smaller Bellville Velodrome was rented, this time with a focus on church and youth leaders. Also this was not a roaring success.
When Rev. Brian Wood, started off as the new pastor of the Cape Town Baptist Church at the beginning of 2003, the congregation had been going through one serious crisis after the other. At the end of the year there was yet another one. The work with French speakers from West Africa was just coming nicely into its own under Pieter le Roux, a final year student of the theological seminary of the denomination. Pieter Le Roux was the son of missionaries working in France, where Pieter ultimately got married to a national. He was doing his internship with the congregation in the Mother City, where a ministry to French- and Portuguese-speaking foreigners had been developed since 1996.
            Pieter Le Roux left for France at the end of 2003 with his wife and child, with the intention to do deputation in preparation for a full-time stint among the French speakers from West Africa in the city. Rev. Brian Wood and his church council was stunned when an email came from there as a bolt from the blue, informing them that the Le Roux’s deemed themselves led to remain in France, to work among the North and West Africans there instead.
            God was evidently still in control because the author had just met Florent Ndomwey, a Congolese pastor during. After contact with Theo Dennis from OM, it turned out that the mission agency had plans to have Florent work among French speakers in Cape Town. Soon the link was laid and a contract drawn up for him to work from the Cape Town Baptist Church as his base. Within months a flourishing work developed there, getting the congregation out of the predicament. At least in terms of numbers the Black African contingent helped that the attendance gradually increased.
A daughter fellowship of the Church of England was started at the George Whitfield Bible School in Muizenberg. The work dwindled towards the end of 2003 (?) so that finally there were only five people attended. A big question mark was hanging over the future of the congregation.
At this time Bruce Retief, the son of Bishop Frank Retief,[6] felt challenged to do something about the plight of the many refugees in Muizenberg. Simultaneously he experienced a challenge to use his talents as a musician in the service of the Lord. He concluded that the best way to join the two was to offer Bible Studies to the local foreigners. In due course a few responded to the invitation. By mid-2006 the struggling congregation was revived when one after the other of those who attended the midweek Bible Studies became followers of Jesus.
At a time when xenophobia was rife, Black Africa was quietly blessing the city more than few believers would ever dream. All over the Cape Peninsula fellowships developed that consisted predominantly of Africans whose home language was not English. Many of them used French as the medium but some of these fellowships became bilingual over the years. The loud sometimes cocophonic praying styles may not have been very attractive to traditional Christians, but their habits –often praying for hours through the night, evidently had its effect in the spiritual realms. A new fervour for prayer returned to the Mother City of South Africa augurs a spirit of expectancy. Is the revival that is to sweep the continent finally about to take off? Only the Lord knows this!!

My speech at Newlands on 15 May 2005, the first Global Day of Prayer

Ever since the event of Acts chapter one, the ten days of prayer in Jerusalem, God has always worked in wonderful ways where believers have prayed. 
As I have been examining spiritual dynamics at the Cape over the centuries, I became so very much aware of God’s redemptive purpose with the Mother City of South Africa. On the other hand, it has been so obvious how Satan tried to cancel the divine plans again and again. 
I decided to restrict myself to one special example of spiritual warfare in recent times which I was privileged to experience and view from close quarters. 

The township of Hanover Park: an example to the nation?

Preparations for the start of a missionary prayer meeting progressed well in a congregation of the township Hanover Park in the second quarter of 1992. Once per month their weekly prayer meetings got a missionary focus, allowing me to come and share there regularly. A Muslim background believer and a former gangster drug addict was the leader of the prayer group. It was thus quite easy to share with them the burden of praying for these groups.
            A few months later Hanover Park experienced the power of prayer in a special way. A committed police sergeant called in the help of the local churches in a last- ditch effort because the police could not cope anymore with the crime situation. Operation Hanover Park was formed. The initiative had prayer by believers from different church backgrounds as its main component. A ministry directed specially at gangsters revolutionised the area. In stead of shooting at each other, rival gangs played football matches against each other. Jesus-centred children’s clubs were started in an effort to make sure that the problem of gangsterism would be tackled at the root, an endeavour to break the cycle of youngsters growing into a life of vice. Within three months the area had changed significantly. An elderly resident who had been in the township for many years, testified that Christmas 1992 was the most peaceful he had experienced there.
            The Saturday afternoon missionary prayer meeting fused into the monthly prayer event of Operation Hanover Park towards the end of 1992. The vision to pray for missionaries called from their area was gladly taken on board. The idea was completely new to the praying believers, but the Lord soon started answering the prayers miraculously. Within a few years the Lansdowne/Hanover Park/Manenberg area was exporting quite a few missionaries.  
            Operation Hanover Park was on the verge of achieving an early version of community transformation at the beginning of 1993 when a leadership tussle stifled the promising movement. 
            Soon thereafter the combined prayer effort fizzled out. Gang-related crime spiralled once again. Hanover Park could have become an example to the rest of the country to show what can be done if the local believers stand together in prayer perseveringly.  We must learn from our mistakes.
I suggest that we as followers of Jesus at the Cape take up seriously the challenges that have been presented to us today. I dare to add another one, namely our relationship to the Jewish and Muslim Communities at the Cape. With regard to these two religions, which also revere Abraham as arch father, one can definitely describe the lack of loving outreach to Jews and Muslims by the Church as the stepchild of Missionary work at the Cape. A first step may have to be a confession of the Church’s unpaid debt in respect of Islam and Judaism.
In respect of the scourge of drug addiction - we as Christians should get serious about making our hands dirty, e.g. by tackling the problem of tik and addiction to other drugs compassionately head-on. Let us ask the Lord passionately to give us  courage to attack the scourge of our Cape communities in an imaginative, loving and  compassionate way as his followers; in a way which would make it so attractive that  many Muslims and Jews would want to join us in following the humble but victorious  Lamb, our Lord Jesus. The Body of Christ would have to do this as united as possible.  And then as a next step, we must strategise for church-led restitution and most important, also implement whatever the Lord would have us to do.

The contribution of churches through prayer in the spiritual vacuum at the Cape which prevented anarchy in 1993 is highlighted by what happened at His People. Right from its early days prayer was a vital part of their mnistry as they endeavoured to 'saturuate every aspect in prayer'. At the beginning of every year Pastor Paul Daniel called the leadership to an annual fast, which could last for up to four weeks. This was a time of consecration as they waited on the Lord to receive His word and specific direction for the year ahead of them. In the church they had what they called 'beach heads' in all the departments when 'literally hundreds of people pray regularly in groups for the church, the leaders, for the country, the continent and the nations of the world. From time to time the whole congregation would pray together for a specific issue.

[1]    Quoted by Elbourne (1992:14f). from Periodical Accounts II, p.368
[2]    This research must have been quite serious. Mears (1973:6) mentions how Middlemiss reported in a letter in 1807 that about forty-two Christians were traced. A few were ‘sincere Methodists’ and a larger number ‘held the principles of the Church of Scotland.’ It appears however that the research was nevertheless limited because he and a few other Christians tried to trace the Methodists ‘or any other Christians that were striving to work out their own salvation.’
[3]    A similar effect has been achieved when the 24 hour prayer watches were revived at the beginning of 2000 CE with Namibia’s Bennie Mostert and John Mulinde from Uganda prominent. 
[4]    He was the father of famous siblings. William was Prime Minister of the Cape Colony in the 1890s and Olive became one of the most distinguished novelists of the country.
[5] The information is taken from Calvary Chapel magazine, issue 26.

[6]    Bishop Retief became well known countrywide after the worshippers at the St. James Church in Kenilworth had been brutally attacked on the last Sunday evening in July 1993. The willingness by those who were maimed and others who had lost relatives in the massacre, to forgive the perpetrators became part of God’s intervention to bring the country to more intense prayer, which ushered in the miracle elections in 1994.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home