Charl's Mission News
My family and I arrived in Washington, DC 6:30am on 21 June and, despite experiencing a computer breakdown the same day and four sick children thereafter, have been blessed by the Lord. We have been granted a 6 month stay in the US.
Ministry partners picked us up at the airport, provided food, accommodation, a new netbook computer, cell phone, GPS, transport, home schooling books and furniture. They have also organized meetings at their homes and churches, and radio interviews.
Fifteen people with 7 vehicles, organized by a dear church friend, arrived to move us into our new abode, a beautiful townhouse in Springfield, VA, the morning of 3 July.
Our family attended a soiree and Sonja and I were blessed with a steam boat cruise on the Potomac River to see the Washington, DC fireworks display from close up on 4 July.
We have been totally overwhelmed by the friendship, kindness and provisions. The Lord has blessed us through so many people we are humbled by His grace and their open hearts. If I had to name each one, I’m sure to get into trouble for leaving someone out. Many thanks to each of you.
Why the US visit?
On previous visits to the US I’ve missed many ministry opportunities due to my fast moving around the country and having a preset itinerary, which does not allow for ad hoc invitations. Sonja and I thus decided to bring the whole family over to the US for an extended time.
During this sabbatical period, which we hope will be longer than 6 months, we, Lord willing, intend to:
- Attend Christian conferences and training seminars to better equip ourselves for ministry.
- Spend time in theological studies.
- Visit our prayer and financial ministry partners.
- Market my book “Shooting Back” published by WorldNetDaily.
Your prayers for us during this time will be very much appreciated.
We’ve had wonderful times of fellowship with many ministry partners already and are looking forward to the following future speaking engagements:
- 21 and 22 July – Bergton, VA - http://www.federationorc.org/
- 1 August – Leesburg, VA - http://www.bethelpres.com/
- 8 August – Richmond, OH - http://www.lighthouseonthehill.org/
- Late August – Meetings in Oklahoma; and during September, in Texas and Florida – details to be posted soon.
We’ve had some interesting issues raised by our children. After having been in the US for 2 days, Anya (4) asked: “So Dad, when do we arrive in America?”
“Dad, why does the time go so much faster in America, compared to back home?”
“Dad, may we stay here longer?”
The children were blessed with a pet hamster, cage and all; but he died after a few days. They were surprised when I would not keep the dead hamster and exchange him for a live one at the pet shop.
Sonja has made wonderful home schooling friends, who have blessed us with great books and resources for the family.
It appears almost impossible to find a competent company that can set up DSL at our home for such a short stay, so email communication might be slow. If you have not received a reply to an email you sent us, please resend, it might have been lost in the computer breakdown.
Thanks again for all your love and support.
Yours in the service of King Jesus.
Charl van Wyk
The month of May was a very exciting month of ministry. The Christian Action Network, which I represented, was invited to take part in the Redtco (The acronym stands for "The Gathering of the Children of God for the Transformation of the Congo") Annual Conference in Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of Congo.
Lubumbashi is the capital of Katanga Province and is the second largest city in the Congo; second only to the capital, Kinshasa, in which I ministered 2 years ago.
Rebel leader, Laurent-Désiré Kabila, announced from Lubumbashi that he is president of the Democratic Republic of the Congo on 17 May 1997 after Mobutu Sese Seko fled Kinshasa. His son, Joseph Kabila, is now president.
My friend, Bishop Lamba Lamba of the Come and See Church, is also the president of Redtco and he personally invited Jo-Ann Downs, deputy president of the African Christian Democratic Party (in South Africa), and I, to speak at this conference.
My friend, Pastor Jeff Kasongo, translated our presentations, into French. My lectures included teaching on ‘Taking back the gates’ (seats of power), ‘God’s judgment’, ‘Is Jesus Christ the Sovereign Lord of the Universe?’ and ‘Money matters’.
Jo-Ann and I were assigned two bodyguards; one of who particularly liked wearing his sunglasses at all times, even when entering a somewhat dark building. The uniformed guards were armed with AK47 assault rifles. I wasn’t quite sure if the man with the ‘shades’ would be willing to get them dirty if we ever ended up in a skirmish with some ‘baddies’.
Another reprint of Dr Peter Hammond’s French edition of ‘Biblical Principles for Africa’ had to be done – this book, for which he has received letters of thanks from presidents, is widely read and in great demand in the Congo.
Redtco has an exciting new strategy. The organisation is encouraging members to form co-operatives and share resources in this way to start small businesses and thus create employment in the previously war-torn city.
One of the goals of the conference was to encourage members to get involved in creating their own ministry and business opportunities and not depend on the West to supply all their needs. We gave a Biblical basis for Christians to be involved in society, to be salt and light and to make a difference in the lives of those around them.
We developed some very basic ideas of how people can start making a living for themselves, for example by planting a vegetable garden, they can tithe from their vegetables to the poor, use what they need for their family and sell the rest or trade with others to help support their families.
Farmers are looked down upon in Congolese society and so people rather prefer to be businessmen, or at least carry that label, even though their families are hungry.
Our presentations were televised citywide.
Redtco is busy developing social services because these are virtually non-existent in Lubumbashi. The first major project is the development of a hospital to serve the community. The hospital will run from a house until larger premises can be acquired.
As many as 1000 people were present at the conference, which ran from a Friday afternoon through to a Sunday afternoon. The Congo is an area, which has many opportunities, both spiritual and commercial.
We praise God for the exciting work that is taking place in the Congo and we look forward to a very large gathering of the saints in October 2010.
“If moms were fish, you’ll be the one I will catch.” Jason (9) has quite an imagination; he wrote these words in his Mother’s Day card to Sonja.
Roberta (13) and John-Marc (7) have just completed their trampoline gymnastics for the term. Jason is playing soccer at the local club and enjoying it very much. I have had to get used to cheering at Saturday morning matches.
Anya (4) under went dental treatment; for this she had to endure sedation therapy. Later that day she told me that the doctor had pushed nails into her; she was remembering the injection needle.
Our family is gearing up to leave for the United States of America on 20 June; we are really looking forward to visiting our friends. It is mid-winter in Cape Town and we are looking forward to the summer weather in the northern hemisphere.
I’ll be doing radio interviews and speaking at the following church services and home fellowship:
27 June - Providence Baptist Church in Harrisonburg, VA
30 June - Home fellowship in Warrenton, VA
11 July - New Life Community Church of Stafford, VA
18 July - Ballston Center ARP Church, Ballston Spa, NY
1 August - Bethel Presbyterian Church, Leesburg, VA
If you’d like further details, please contact Debbie at ITMI on (480) 968-4100 or email me.
Please pray for us as we travel as a family
CharlPS: US tax-deductible donations may be made over the web at:
In Touch Mission International or 1 (480) 968-4100
On Saturday 17 April I arrived in Lusaka, Zambia and joined my Frontline Fellowship colleagues, John and David, for ministry. They had already travelled by road from Cape Town, South Africa, through Mozambique and Malawi before arriving in Zambia.
We were again blessed by the hospitality of my friend Bishop Dr John Jere and his wife, Joyce. John, who founded Zambia United Christian Action (Zuca), serves on the National Constitutional Conference (NCC) of Zambia: a body re-writing the national constitution.
I visited Lusaka in June last year to help support the idea of Zambia remaining a constitutional republic – Bishop John and I visited the press and I was interviewed on a television show and the TV news, regarding these issues.
Whilst on this April visit the NCC voted, with an overwhelming majority, to keep Zambia constitutionally a Christian Republic. John and his colleagues have been working hard to see this vision come to fruition.
Bishop John arranged four services for our team to preach at on Sunday.
We visited the Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia, met with the CEO and also networked with other Christian leaders, including Bishop Peter Ndhlovu.
Peter heads up The Bible Gospel Church in Africa, which has just celebrated its 10th anniversary. The congregation has over 3000 members and The Bible Gospel Church in Africa has over 240 congregations and 89 community schools. They have also planted churches in most of the neighbouring countries of Zambia, including in the Congo, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe.
Leaders of the political party ‘Zambians for Empowerment and Development’ including their president, Dr Fredrick Mutesa, met with our team and spent time discussing the ideas of Biblical principles being applied in government. Bishop John had blessed them with books from our Christian Action Network – they were very excited about what they had learnt through studying these materials.
Pastor Reuben Mwale, a graduate of Frontline Fellowship’s Great Commission Course (GCC), has been involved in amazing pursuits, including growing sugar cane and many kinds of vegetables as well as animal husbandry. He is now also supporting 7 orphans and one of his colleagues wants to start a pre-school.
The people in his area are extremely poor and there are no church buildings. We trained leaders outside in the shade of trees.
Reuben says that all he has done to support the locals and orphans is because of what he learnt on the Great Commission Course: “You told us on the GCC not to be beggars, but to plant vegetables. You told us to provide for the orphans in our community. Now I’m doing that.”
A visit to Kabwe was wonderful. Our friends Tim and Ashley Keller and their two children - Monica (2) and Frederick (4 months) - hosted us. Tim is training school teachers in Biblical Worldview thinking and how to apply the Lordship of Jesus Christ to the world of education. He has produced an edited version of the book ‘The Seven Laws of Teaching’.
We also delivered educational materials to Eugene Kalunga, the founder and principal of Excellence Christian Academy in Kabwe.
Early morning, Tuesday 13 April, at home just before I left for Zambia, an attacker forced open a security gate and door to gain entry to a neighbour's home and startled him. A fight ensued and our neighbour was stabbed in the arm. The attacker, although injured, escaped through a window.
Around 07h00 another neighbour was leaving for work; when walking down his garden pathway, he looked straight into the eyes of someone lying in his garden undergrowth.
He ran back inside to fetch his firearm. The hider jumped from his garden into ours. The police, who were still at the crime scene, saw what had happened. They and our armed neighbour cleared our 6 ft backyard wall, chased the man and arrested him in our yard.
When the stabbing victim arrived back from the hospital, after having stitches for his knife wound, he identified the arrested man as the one who had stabbed him.
The police officers did a great job. I have much admiration for the victim, who fought off a knife-wielding attacker with his bare hands.
Armed neighbours are a blessing too; rather than being a victim, they help save lives.
Besides John and I being charged by a family of elephants, whilst in our vehicle, our Zambian visit was crime free.
Future ministry opportunities lined up are: ministering to a pastors fraternal, training of 1000 Christian leaders in the Congo, speaking at a men’s breakfast and a Mothers’ Day sermon.
Praise the Lord; He has been gracious to us.
Thank you for all your prayers and support.
Charl van Wyk
“How on earth can one use soccer to further the Gospel?” I asked.
Brad Wos, International Teams and University CoordinatorforThe Ultimate Goal (TUG), was a guest on our radio show ‘Salt and Light’. Former Brazilian National Football player Jose Cabral, sat next to Brad in the studio.
These men are taking the Gospel of Jesus Christ to many young people and using the 2010 Soccer World Cup, being hosted by South Africa, as a means. TUG’s vision: To mobilise and empower the body of Christ to bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the world through the platform of the 2010 soccer event.
Jason (9), John-Marc (7) and I decided to join Brad and church friends at an Upward Soccer Coaching Clinic (Upward Sports SA is a member of TUG).
Very well organised and presented training took place the day before our soccer outreach started. Our passion: Impacting the lives of farm workers’ children between the ages of 5 and 13 with the Gospel and thus also reaching families of the community.
US and local sponsors for this outreach allowed Upward Sports to provide everything our church needed to run an effective sports ministry from leadership and coaches training to Bibles for players, jerseys, coloured soccer balls, curriculum and awards.
Every soccer skill taught has a Bible verse and principle associated with it. Life skills flow from this teaching and each participant learns a memory verse. Even the coloured soccer balls presented to each child have Biblical significance associated with the colouring.
Now I must admit that becoming a soccer coach for such a clinic has its negative impact on those of us who are over 40 (years, not kilograms). Three hours a morning of very excited children, loads of energy expended and exhaustion was well worth it when one considers the impact such a clinic has on the whole community.
Parents arrived the final evening for the prize giving and ‘boerewors braai’ – sometimes known as a ‘barbeque’ by those who are still learning the art.
According to George Barna, "The greatest evangelistic window currently available is among young children." According to Barna Group research, children ages 5 to 13 have a 32 % probability of coming to Christ; teenagers and adults have just a 4% and 6% probability respectively of doing the same. And so it was wonderful seeing young people committing themselves to follow Jesus Christ.
“I get goose bumps when I see these materials.” Jean, a Bible college administrator, said.
“We’ve been praying for materials for our college and for young children.”
Jean was looking at some of the many tons of Gospel and discipleship literature sent to Frontline Fellowship by US friends.
The literature arrived at our offices on one of our hottest summer days.
A team of ministry friends arrived to help with the arduous task of off-loading the materials.
Thousands of Christians around Africa are going to be blessed and equipped for outreaches when they receive these invaluable materials.
My friend, Rev Toni in Khayelitsha, where I’ll be preaching later this month, was very excited about receiving a trailer load of literature for outreaches, education and discipleship.
Anya (4) walked into our lounge carrying large stones. She put them down and told me not to move them.
As I questioned her about this she picked one up and tried to throw it. Thankfully it slipped out of her hand onto the floor and so a window or mirror wasn’t smashed.
“The man threw the stone at the very big man because he was very naughty,” she announced and walked off to find more stones.
Maybe I should be more careful about how I tell Bible stories to my children.
Our director, Dr Peter Hammond, on a recent ministry trip to Zambia was received by the Minister of Home Affairs, Minister Lameck Mangani. The Honorable Mangani expressed interest in Frontline Fellowship assisting with the training of police and prison chaplains and supplying Evangelistic and Discipleship materials for prisons.
I’ll, Lord willing, visit Zambia to help with this ministry opportunity.
Bishop Lamba Lamba has also invited me to the Congo to help teach Christian leaders how to apply the Lordship of Jesus Christ especially in the socio-political arena.
The Bishop’s Come and See Church is church planting in Namibia. Pastor Jeff Kasongo is in need of help there too as he embarks on this vital project of reaching many Congolese refugees for Christ.
Thank you for your prayers and support.
The 1st of February marked the 13th commemoration of the legalisation of abortion on demand in South Africa. Since 1 February 1997, approximately 900 000 babies have been killed - by abortion - legally.
On Sanctity Life Sunday, 31 January, churches observed a solemn and serious time of repentance and prayer for the national sin of abortion; some collected baby goods for mothers going through crisis pregnancies.
Monday 1 February was our 14th funeral procession through the streets of Cape Town to the prayer vigil at the gates of Parliament. It was the first time the authorities would not issue a permit for the event to take place – a senior police official told me that he had warned the local police that we might take part in an “illegal demonstration” – so that we could be arrested.
Even with the political obstruction, we continued with the outreach – 130 Christians joined the procession and prayer meeting. Local City Police arrived at the last minute to escort our procession through the streets of Cape Town – still with no written authority. Wonderful that the ‘lower magistrate’ got involved.
Quite funny that the provincial police officer thought that threatening us with incarceration would scare us into cancelling our prayer vigil.
I’m sure news headlines like “Christians arrested when praying outside South Africa’s Parliament” wouldn’t help encourage the international community with the World Cup Soccer taking place here soon.
Firearms Court Case
Gun Owners of South Africa (GOSA), of which I am an executive member, started the ball rolling and found plaintiffs for a landmark South African court case:
Following an application by the Justice Alliance of SA (JASA) and the False Bay Gun Club, the Western Cape High Court gave Police Minister Mthethwa 90 days to draw up guidelines for compensation to firearm owners’ who surrendered their guns to the State, under the Firearms Control Act (disarmament programme).
After the State published 'guidelines', JASA declared: "After consultation with Senior and Junior Counsel JASA will take the Minister of Police back to the Cape High Court…alleging that the Guidelines issued by him do not comply with the order of the Court made on August 31, and do not comply with S.137 (5) of the Firearms Control Act."
John Smyth, JASA Executive Member, also pointed out on television that this compensation case goes to the root of the rule of law and if the Executive defies Parliament and the courts, we are on the road to another Zimbabwe.
This case is of interest to all South Africans. It is all about the rule of law, the States adhering to the Constitution, the right to own property and the dishonouring of the pledge that Ministers swear to uphold the South African Constitution.
Workers have lost their jobs and entrepreneurs their businesses because of this law. The elderly have been treated with disrespect when attempting to claim compensation. Others have lost their lives when found defenceless after handing in their weapons due to police threats of arrest if they did not comply with this immoral law.
The Pan Africanist Congress (PAC) political party (the ex-military wing was the Azanian Peoples’ Liberation Army – the group responsible for the attack on our church in 1993) have hit the news again.
Reports state that messages urging the killing of whites were posted on a Facebook site of one of its officials.
The messages also claimed an army of about 3 000 people was standing by, ready to kill white people within 24 hours if requested to do so. The messages were apparently posted above a YouTube video clip showing Nelson Mandela with a group of people allegedly singing songs about "killing white people".
There are certainly no lack of ministry opportunities here in Africa.
Roberta celebrated her 13th birthday on 16 February. Now we have 3 adults at home. Our gift is ‘an introduction to photography’ course – so we might have some better photographs for newsletters soon.
A ‘cowgirl’ party took place with Roberta’s friends; American missionary friends taught ‘line dancing’. I was relegated to the fire and braaing meat patties for hamburgers.
Sonja was involved in a minor ‘hit and run’ motor car accident; at least that is what the Third Party thought it was going to be, until Sonja raced after the man, who was caught at a traffic light. She hooted at him and motioned him to pull over, then got all his information from him. That’s my wife.
Roberta, Jason (9) and John-Marc (7) are enjoying swimming and trampoline gymnastics. Jason will be playing soccer this winter.
Anya still torments the cats by loving them so much one wonders if the cats can breath!
We appreciate your prayers and support.
This year started off with a bang. Our Biblical Worldview Summit (BWS) began on 1 January at a tented camping area on a farm near Cape Town. Attendees flew in from around the world to take part in this challenging course.
The week of the Summit forms part of the 3 week Great Commission Course (GCC).
My children, Roberta (12), Jason (9), John-Marc (7) and Anya (3) joined me at the farm and took part in the children’s programme.
Many attendees were surprised to find that when we said, in our Summit brochures, that we would start our days with physical training before quiet times, we actually meant it. Gents and ladies had separate PT instruction. The men, ranging in age from 6-65 years old, ran to a dam and swam early in the morning, held relay races and competed in teams through an obstacle course which left many bruises, grazes and aching muscles – even the leaders took part and we proudly finished second – no there weren’t only 2 teams.
Our Frontline Fellowship director, Dr Peter Hammond, developed the BWS to help Christian young people defend their faith at educational institutions where we have nothing less than a war of worldviews taking place in South Africa. In fact, the Dutch government has clandestinely made an ‘investment’ in our nation of R160 million (US$ 21 million) over four years to teach our children evolution because they believe our children are being inadequately taught”.
The biggest complaint from attendees was that the weeklong course was too short.
Great Commission Course
The GCC takes further the BWS training and prepares Christians for cross-cultural missions – discipling the nations. If Christians don’t understand the worldviews and cultures of those they seek to reach with the Gospel, their outreaches can lead to frustration and strained relationships.
Physical challenges included night hikes up the mountain, PT every morning and on the last night, we hiked up the Eastern slopes of Table Mountain to the McClear Beacon (the highest point) and down Plattekloof Gorge - an 8-hour ordeal ending just before mid-night.
Some of my lectures included: ‘Egalitarianism and Respecting Elders’, ‘Money Matters’, ‘Are We Living In the Last Days?’, ‘Africa and the 10 Commandments’, ‘Self-defence’ and ‘Cultural Chaos’.
Spiritual disciplines were taught, practical workshops on safety and security and vehicle maintenance took place and academic tests were written.
Many outreaches formed part of the curriculum. Attendees led many to the Lord and prayed for and witnessed to people in the city streets late at night outside nightclubs and prostitute dens.
One young attendee prayed with a man who was HIV positive: “He asked me not to close my eyes when I pray for him because the other street people will know he is HIV positive if they saw me praying for him, and he’ll be rejected by the community.”
Some comments by attendees in the Response form included: “Well organised, inspiring, uplifting and fun”; “Very high standard”; “Very insightful presentations, excellent subjects”; “Absolutely necessary for entrenching Scripture – which is God’s Word - in the hearts and minds of Christians”; “Excellent planning, excellent presentations, I was strengthened in my faith and duty”.
We had preaching invitations for course members at many different churches in townships. One very special occasion was when the group visited a prison with our friends of the Andrew Murray Centre in Wellington. Many ‘awaiting trial’ prisoners were lead to repentance and faith in Jesus Christ.
An abortion clinic prayer vigil and outreach took place with one lone pro-deather showing up. The KwaSizabantu Mission work party of practical help to our friends and neighbours was a means at blessing those ministering to people struggling in our society.
Those who completed the course, wrote that they are prepared to do some work: “Teach the Biblical Worldview to families, churches and governments”; “Pray and Evangelise”; “1. Overcome denial. 2. Repent. 3. Accept responsibility. 4. Walk the true talk.”; “Thorough evangelisation of Africa”; “Christians must be awakened from slumber for more of this information to be carried to churches”; “Proclaim the Word of God directly to heads of government.”
Overall we only had to send two attendees home because of bad attitude, breaking rules and arrogance that precluded them from taking part in all activities.
Gun Owners of South Africa is involved in a public ‘war of words’ with the Minister of Police due to the department not paying compensation to those who have and are handing in their firearms. One wonders what people are thinking when they hand over their guns to a bunch of ex-terrorists who are now government officials.
The 1st of February will mark the 13th commemoration of the legalisation of abortion on demand in South Africa. Since 1 February 1997 approximately 900 000 babies have been killed - by abortion - legally. On 31 January all churches are encouraged to observe a solemn and serious time of repentance and prayer for the national sin of abortion.
Our Funeral Procession through the streets of Cape Town to the Prayer Vigil at the gates of Parliament takes place on Monday 1 February.
We appreciate your prayers and support as we seek to apply the Lordship of Jesus Christ to all areas of life.
Yours in His service