Planting and growing churches in informal settlement communities with special reference to Orange Farm
Ntshumayelo, Matholose Paulus
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The study of planting and growing of churches in the informal settlement communities is an important research topic. It has not been covered by most researchers in their research work. Although it is a very important research topic, it is also a very difficult topic to handle because there are no adequate written records on the activities of the informal settlement communities in South Africa. In South Africa today there are millions of people who are staying in the informal settlement communities. These areas are mushrooming daily. Many people who are staying in these areas have not yet heard the gospel. Most churches neglect the planting and growing of churches in the inner cities and do very little to communicate the gospel to the informal settlement communities. This dissertation is an attempt to address the need to plant and grow churches in the informal settlement communities. Orange Farm informal settlement community is used as a special reference. The church is given the command to evangelize the whole world (Mathew 28:1820). Christians have been called to do mission work, but there are many misconceptions about the missionary calling. God calls all the converted people to a ministry within the church. Christ's servants must proclaim the gospel of the kingdom and bear witness in word and deed. We must therefore show that we do not only preach the gospel but our message is accompanied by skills we are offering to the poor. Jesus Had a particular interest in the poor and other marginalized groups. In His ministry He used both word and deed to minister them. He addressed both the spiritual and physical needs of the people. The church in the informal settlement community is also surrounded by growing numbers of those who are in need. It is the task of the church to reach out to all/ people with the gospel. The role of the church in the informal settlement communities is to interpret the reality of the gospel through the experience of the poor in the struggle for justice and wholeness.
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