In May 2017 Ziba Mbense, Cam Chaplin, Pam Wilkinson, Callan Smith, Langa Hlongwane, myself, Precious Bikitsha and some others started meeting on Sundays in Langa Township – Cape Town. Our goal? to really get to know people, share the gospel of Jesus and build a diverse community of people. Now, after 8 months doing this and with the ups and downs that have come with this adventure – this is what I have learnt.

 

1.) Real reconciliation can happen.

We have shared life, shared stories, cried together, laughed together, read the Bible together, eaten together and prayed together.

South Africa (like the rest of the world) is not fully reconciled (and wont be until King Jesus returns to make all things new). There are sadly many divides in our land. But real reconciliation can happen (if only for a moment) and I only tasted it.
Real reconciliation, I believe, happens when people from different  backgrounds are able to share life together. To give and to take, to take and to give. To teach each other and grow together. This I have only slightly tasted in our community in Langa.

 

2.) Xhosa is an awesome language

I now find myself singing Xhosa songs in the shops, much to the surprise of Xhosa people who over hear me singing, “Igama lenkosi malibongwe…”

My Xhosa has grown in leaps and bounds since spending more time with Xhosa speaking people and wow, do I love the language. I am far from fluent, but have learnt more than I knew before. I learnt to greet children by saying, “molweni bantu” and to call the book of Psalms, while teaching the Bible, “Ndumisa.”

 

3.) Townships are not what most white people think.

I was taught wrongly about townships.

Growing up as a white male in South Africa, I was taught (subconsciously) to stay away from townships. I am so sad that this was and in some places, still the reality. Townships, like any other suburb, are places of people and people are made in the image of God. They are complex places of history and culture. They are beautiful places. Apart form the hours spent in Langa, a few of us also spent a night in Langa. That was cool.

All in all it has been a life changing experience to grow as a South Africa, in Langa. Thank you to all who have impacted my life. Sadly though, I am off to South Korea for two years (at least) and so my journey in Langa is ending, but hopefully only for now :.)