The short and sweet of distance groups
During the past year a number of Mukhanyo’s some 60 distance Bible study groups were visited and the visitors have gained the following impressions:
• Tutors put in much effort with the students and go above and beyond what is expected of them. They are volunteers, but very dedicated.
• The quality of the services provided by Mukhanyo (memoranda, study guides, DVDs, etc) can still be improved significantly. This will require Mukhanyo to make more resources available.
• Student’s thinking and knowledge are broadened. They express that a whole new world opens up to them. They now recognise the authority of the Bible and can test the authority of the preacher against it.
• Students have learned how the Old Testament opens up the New Testament.
• Many students are already making a difference on ground level in their communities. They preach what they learn with the result that their church members are also growing.
• Students are enthusiastic about the truth and eager to learn. Some struggle with conflict in their churches because they are now believing and doing things differently.
• Mukhanyo succeeds in its goal to train African church leaders and is making a difference.
Here follows some comments on specific study groups:
Welkom: This group lead by Rev Louis O’Tool is a sharp group of students. Louis presents the material in the most effective way and pushes the students to maximise their full potential. A practical class was held where students had to exegete a passage of Scripture and critique and evaluate each other. The church in Welkom supports Mukhanyo as part of their missional vision.
Hoopstad: It is a great delight for the tutor, Frans du Toit, to teach the students. The local church supports this project and subsidises the student fees with R120 per student per module. The students faithfully attend classes in the Tikwana township.
Pinetown: Three pastors worked together to start this group, since they identified a shortage of evangelists and pastors in the African communities. If students miss a class, they get a 1 000-word assignment to do from the tutor, Dr Riens de Haan. The tutor uses PowerPoint presentations to make classes more interesting. They also try to have many practical classes and revision.
Marina Beach: This group of students come from far and wide. The best method of training for them is to attend an intensive week of training in each period. This takes place at the South Coast Bible School, run by tutor George Sander. George is a committed missionary and has been serving the Lord faithfully for many years.
South Coast Groups: These groups are coordinated by Herman Swart under the banner of the King Christian Outreach Trust. He is an evangelist and tutor for these groups and he has taken the initiative for all the tutors of these groups to coordinate with each other. Two tutors work together in order to keep each other accountable and deliver the best training to the students.