Microsite Reflections – a church community perspective
It is amazing how the microsite came to be through relationship and word of mouth (and God’s nudging). Somebody spoke to somebody who spoke to somebody…… and the CHS Pastorate found ourselves unanimously agreeing to open up the church for a group of homeless women. I love how God works in our hearts without us even noticing. It was so exciting to be a part of this wonderful effort. After meeting Phinius and Katlyn Sebatsane we spent a few days moving all of the chairs and stage boxes out of the church. We had a wonderful time dividing the hall into sections to fit mattresses and side tables for the ladies and making the hall feel like home. We converted the Upstairs Room into a lounge with a tv and blankets against the cold. The cottage used for the creche was turned into a washing area, with a borrowed washing machine installed and washing lines strung up behind the church.
I was so touched by the many many offers of help from the CHS community. So many people supplied food, bedding, clothing and their time (the most valuable). It felt like a real community effort.
And yes, there were times when things were difficult, but God, as always, was so gracious and loving and patient with everyone.
A real highlight for me was getting to know Phinius and Katlyn Sebatsane who were the site managers and generously gave themselves to these ladies, sleeping in a makeshift bedroom we had created in the cry room. They are an inspiring couple who are Jesus to people on the streets of Muizenberg. And I think that this is one of the things that really struck me – that by welcoming these women into our building, and loving them, we were being Jesus to them. What an incredible honour that proved to be. To be a part of restoring dignity and giving people hope – not much can top that.
The second thing that struck me was how many groups and people (outside of CHS) have been a part of this effort. I had no idea that so many communities had invested their time, energy and resources into the lives of these women. It is a wonderful thing that CHS has been connected, through these ladies, to so many who have so much to offer. Again, what an incredible privilege.
Although my role in the Microsite has been mainly as grocery shopper and administrator (with the odd bit of window fixing), I cannot express what a huge blessing it has been to be a part of this effort. Our CHS community has shown what it is like to be Jesus to others and I hope that we can continue to do this on an even greater scale in the future. It feels like the action of opening our church as a home has birthed something that is as yet, without form, but I can feel the potential for us to do more.
Thank you CHS for being you and for being Jesus to others