CHS Children & Youth – Term 2


9 May, 6 June, 4 July
Families Service 11:15- 12:00am
This is a chance for mixed aged households, particularly those with preschoolers and primary school kids, to come together in all-age worship.

30 May & 27 June
Families Social – 11:15am
Meet at CHS and walk to the park on Kirstenhof greenway (bring your own drinks/ snacks).

16 & 30 May and 13 & 27 June
‘Ground Zero’ Youth – 9am
Soccer and social @CHS for 14 – 17 years olds.

Every Sunday
Youth Alpha – 4-5:30pm for10-13 year olds starting 9 May

In Person
The Childrens Church room is open during the service for parents or guardians to use with their babies & preschoolers, with a selection of toys and live stream broadcast of the service.

At Home
Home Learning packs with links to Bible stories and activities for 4-13 year olds, are available at the Families Service or on the Families Watsapp group.

Microsite Reflections – a church community perspective

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

Nina Young  😊

Microsite Reflections – Opening a door to what God desires

Microsite Reflections – Opening a door to what God desires

The microsite story will live long in the memory, and this for a number of reasons but mainly because in all these things God has a great desire to be part of our collective and individual freedom journeys. I distinctly remember seeing these images on social media posted by this guy called Phinius on social media. I wasn’t sure what was grabbing me about them…the filters were extremely specific but it had to be more than that. He was documenting a journey of some special people who were living on the mountain in Muizenberg. At first they were centred around the living conditions but things changed and it appeared to me that there was a real desire on the faces of these guys to find a home. They would use placards almost like a toyi toyi, and their message was clear, ‘We are here, and we are looking for home…’
Whilst this was happening a small group of people from CHS were tasked by Brendan to look into the different options that the church could be used for in the COVID response time. Should we be a storage facility? A testing facility? I appreciate I have a home bias, but for me nothing excited me apart from the idea of the church opening its doors to become a shelter for the most vulnerable. Ron and I were encouraged to pursue the options by Brendan. To my shock however I found out that Pastorate quite hesitant and unsure about the idea of opening the church to provide shelter. I was deeply disappointed and I felt like it was a missed opportunity, I was convinced that God wasn’t getting excited about the church being a storage facility!
But these images that I kept seeing continued to poke me – a spiritual discomfort – even in the knowledge of this ‘no’ that we had heard. Who is this Phinius guy anyway? Caroline from The Warehouse already knew him and she encouraged me to make contact. I remember the moment I called Phinius, I was in the garden in my house and for some reason I was extremely nervous. I knew that I had to glean a wider picture of what was going on in Muizenberg, without giving away any idea that the church had something to offer. Phinius came across as someone with clarity and compassion, and immediately approachable. He described the story of the group of people who he and his wife Katlyn had been called to serve, and he continued to describe how a wider community of people had gathered around them…CAN groups, the Uturn NGO, some of his own friends, interactions with local councillors etc. The solitary void in the conversation was glaringly obvious, the only thing missing from this was a building.
Phinius made it very clear that their first priority was to find a home for the ladies in the group, which numbered about 10. When I heard that we might be talking about 10 ladies, and that they would be coming with a ready made social infrastructure around them, I felt like this thing could be possible, EVEN in the face of the ‘no’ we heard previously. I dropped the phone call and immediately called Brendan to put forward a tentative proposal. To my surprise he was receptive, dare I say excited; this door that I had assumed would shut immediately wasn’t shutting. It kept opening. When we fully understood the depth and breadth of the work Phinius and Katlyn had already done to ensure that these beautiful but vulnerable people would be cared for, the fear of what all of this means (or could mean) started to vanish. It all seemed possible.
The doors kept opening. The ‘no’ from pastorate became a ‘yes’. I see this as a miracle, what greater miracle is there than hearts and perspective changes? But then there was the Parish, what would they say? The doors kept opening. At the celebration dinner at the end of the time of the microsite I went up to some of the ladies at the end, and thanked them for being here: ‘We need you as much as you need us…’ Or words to that effect. The least of these (in a worldly sense) had felt welcomed in the church which is not something we can always say. And why do we need them? Because we have been given a mandate by God to open up a table. A feast table, a table whose presence reminds all humans that you are welcome and that you matter and that God has a plan for your life. So I believe there is a direct connection between the concept of the table (that emanated form the facilitation sessions in the church to build the life centre) and these beautiful ladies. Our job is to continue to find each other, and even be led by those we thought we have been called to care for.
I hope this all makes sense. Have a great day.
Kind Regards 

Barry Lewis
0833273045

Microsite Reflections – A Godly Journey

Microsite Reflections

The following was a 2020 reflection (approx. 3rd quarter), in the midst of COVID lockdown and Gods work.
 
 

 
I have been trying over the weekend to articulate what God has done in the last 4 months when we were at CHS and it’s hard. You see, when we started working with these precious women on the street of Muizenberg, we were told that we’re ”wasting our time”, ”they will never change”, ”they’re gangsters, “they’re dangerous, be careful”, ”just ignore them”, ”don’t tell them where you live or give them your number” ”don’t feed them.” ”You’re too young, you don’t know what you’re doing”. We were told a lot of hurtful things (especially about coloured people) and lost ’friends’ and ’mentors’ for obeying God. We faced a lot of persecution and rejection. It was hard and lonely. We had to choose between being the Priest and the Levite who ignored a man who was beat up on the side of the road or be the good samaritan and love our ’homeless’ neighbour; our brothers and sisters as God commanded (not suggested). Like Peter we started to doubt because of listening to the wrong voices, but God was faithful when we were not and He brought strangers (good Samaritans) on our path who believed in us and poured into us. He turned what was meant for evil into good and made what looked impossible, possible. He taught us that His love is greater than fear and His grace is greater than disappointments. He loved us to love others.
 
 
We’re so proud of these women. It wasn’t easy but when they got the revelation of whose they are, they took their power and dignity back from the hands of the enemy. All we did was put the mirror (the Word) of God in front of them every day and remind them of who they are and God did the rest. We believe God can change anyone. There is no one He created that is too messed or broken for Him to fix. You see, homelessness can be ended, not just by housing but by a caring community. By genuine relationships. By treating people like human beings, not projects. By listening to those we serve and doing what is best for them, not a program. By providing a HOME, not just temporary shelters that only meet people’s physical needs and neglects their emotional and spiritual needs. By serving, loving and living with the people as equals, not as superiors. By sharing resources and working together as a community. By inviting God in the issue because this is more than a house (physical) issue, it’s an identity (spiritual) issue. The truth is, we can’t change people, that’s God’s job but we can love them. People heal and grow where they feel loved, not judged. We have seen God turn these beautiful ladies who thought they were caterpillars into butterflies. They’re not the same women we met a few months ago. All they wanted was love; love that doesn’t give up on them when they mess up. A place to belong and call HOME – something they tried to find on the street, but all they got was pain. We’re so grateful that we have a Father in heaven who doesn’t waste pain and hears the cries of the marginalised in society.
 
 
Someone once told me, ”If you want to go fast go alone, but if you want to go far, take some people with you.” You see, this is bigger than us. We couldn’t do this without God, friends and strangers who we now call family. 3 months ago we had nothing, just a seed (vision) in the womb looking for a place to be planted and grow. We are so thankful to CHS, for praying and championing us to fulfil what God has called us to do. These wouldn’t be possible without your YES. Thank you for believing in us and our friends on the street. Where I come from we say, ”It takes a village to raise a child” and I can certainly say, it takes a caring community to end homelessness.
 
 
So what’s next? Well, some of the ladies are home with their families. We managed to reconcile them with their families and put them in a rehab program that finishes in January. 5 of the ladies are working with EPWP and earning some money to look after themselves. 2 of the ladies are in the process of getting their ID documents so that they can start working. In the meantime, they’re volunteering and working in different organizations to empower themselves and we will check on them weekly to make sure they reach their goal. We’re super excited for the next season for them. We know it’s not going to be easy for them but we are glad that they have a Father and a family to run to when they’re struggling. PRAY FOR THEM. Pray for them to remember like the prodigal son of how much they’re loved by the Father when they’re in the wilderness.
 
 
We believe God has started something amazing @ CHS and we want to normalise it. This is not the end, it’s only the beginning. We want to help more women on the street, but we need a building; a house of restoration for homeless women. That’s our next mission. If the church can partner with us on this mission, let us know. We are busy looking at a 5 bedroom house in Lakeside that will cost R10 000 per month to rent and if we want to buy it, it will be R3.5 million. So please pray with us.
 
One powerful thing I have learned in this time is the power of COMM-UNITY. Courage is birthed and sustained in community, not in isolation. Nothing is impossible when we put our agendas and differences aside and work together towards a common goal as people.
 
 
Again, thank you CHS for believing in us. We appreciate everything you have done for us.

Keep on praying for us.          

God bless you       

Phinius Sebatsane           

Here I Am.Send Me                  

(Missionary)

Email:pt.sebatjane@gmail.com              

Worship, Friendship & Learning Together

Worship, Friendship & Learning Together

Following on from Charlie Alexander’s report on the Parish Worship nights at the end of last year, Gil Marsden gives her perspective.

I got involved in the parish monthly worship sessions last year, when the group started meeting to record IRL. For those who aren’t with the lingo, that means In Real Life. It was such a blessed relief to worship together, playing actual instruments, with actual humans, after weeks of pre-recorded worship in our separate homes for our separate church online services during lockdown. I have to admit to being a bit nervous when I arrived at the first rehearsal, as I barely knew a soul on the joint parish team. But they welcomed me with open arms (metaphorically speaking and under strict Covid protocols, of course) and only teased me a little bit.

As it happens, over the past year I’ve been on a very slow and belated journey exploring racism, my own privilege and bias as a white person and the chasm that often seems to exist between Biblical justice and the historical evangelical primary emphasis on salvation. As a 4th generation descendant of Irish missionaries to Central Africa, and having grown up and studied in Zambia, Zimbabwe and the UK, before finally settling in Cape Town as a married adult in 1999, it’s not surprising that I find my heritage and identity confusing and sometimes shameful.

So where does parish worship come into it? Well, firstly, it’s been a joy and a challenge to learn a whole new worship repertoire in different languages and styles. We’ve been fortunate, at CHS, to have written and sung many homegrown worship songs as part of our DNA from the early days of our church plant. However, it’s all too easy to default to the well-known and easy formulas of some of the overseas mega-churches’ worship songs. No offence to them, many anointed songs have come out of them. But the focus of the parish worship sessions has been to use songs written on our continent, in our country, in South African languages and by some of the parish team themselves – and that’s been powerful.

The challenge aspect has been that due to time constraints we often don’t have a lot of preparation or rehearsal time and it has pushed me out of my comfort zone to be playing and singing songs that I don’t feel adequately prepared for, especially in a language I don’t speak. “Welcome to our world!” say all the people for whom English is a second, third or fourth language and who have to tackle the majority of hymns and worship songs in English most of the time. So that’s a worthwhile learning curve for me!

Secondly, apart from broadening my song repertoire, the monthly gathering has allowed me to begin to make friends with people from (I’m not gonna lie) a different generation to me but also with a different skin colour and cultural heritage to me.  When we’re practicing and recording, it’s hard to actually get to know one another – especially behind a mask or a microphone. But in the breaks or when sharing a meal together, we’re beginning to share stories and life circumstances and always, the banter!

So it’s a slow process, but this is the work to be done of examining one’s long-held beliefs, biases and blind spots and allowing friends of colour, in Christ, to call me out, challenge me, contradict me and correct me where necessary – and for it to be happening in the context of joint worship across our parish churches, is definitely a God thing. I am grateful to God and to all the people in the parish worship team for being part of this journey with me.

 Written by Gil Marsden
Member of CHS Worship Team

Churches Together Sonrise Service

Sunday 4 April at 7am
Zandvlei yacht club

Together with other local churches including Mountainview Baptist, Muizenberg and Tokai Methodist, Muizenberg Connect and Bay City Church we are celebrating our risen saviour, with a joint outdoor sunrise Easter service at the Zandvlei yacht club on Sunday 4 April at 7am. There will be chairs set out but you can bring your own camping chair and a themos of coffee if you,d like.

CHS Annual Church Meeting

12 April 2021 – 7pm

Join us as we give thanks and reflect on all God has done in the last year. Will include ACM report, financial summary and Life Centre progress update.

This Life article shares Life Centre vision

This Life Online magazine has recorded some great video interviews sharing what is already happening at CHS and our vision for the Life Centre.

Click here to read the article and watch the videos

An easy way to support our fundraising for the Life Centre is by:

Signs and Seasons Online Bible Study

On Tuesday 16 Feb at 7:30pm we are starting a 5 week online zoom bible study in the gospel of John, led by Trevor Owen. There will be a teaching followed by an opportunity for discussion. 

If you would like to take part please contact the church office.