October 2022

Let's Build a Church!

We’ve had a number of church plants arise from the Reach4Life program in areas where there isn’t a born-again church for kids and their families to go to. On May 28, King Mthembu graciously allocated some land in Esijozini Village to build a church for the church plant there. (See some of the group meeting outside in the picture above.)  In fact, the land borders one of the R4L schools, Lwandulwazi Primary School, which has been doing Reach4Life for 5 years. The land measures about 3.7 acres, and fencing has already been put up to secure the property.  Now plans have been drawn up for the building, which will measure 12x30 meters (about 39 x 98 feet). We expect the cost to be around $51,000 at today’s excellent exchange rate of around 18 Rand per dollar. Last year we built a church in Harrismith, and it is already being fully utilized as a church, including community outreaches such as kids’ tutoring, elder care, etc. Sometimes it has been standing room only.  (Thus we are building this church a little bigger.) We would love to have you join us on this journey! If you would like to be a part of building the kingdom in Africa, you can donate here. On the second page of the payment process, select “Tugela Church” from the projects dropdown box. Thanks for your help!

University Students Trained to Teach R4L Groups

Fifty-seven students from the University of KwaZulu-Natal and Durban TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training ) college are fired up after being trained as Peer Educators on their campuses. Each group will be led by a pair of two Peer Educators. Two thousand Reach4Life Bibles have gone into the two institutions.  Mxolisi is the coordinator of this Pietermaritzburg work and we are already receiving great reports from them!  

"I Am That I Am Because Christ Came into My Life"

We have shared a few times previously about a R4L student who went to Cuba to study to be a doctor. She gave her life to Christ when she was doing Reach4Life in grade 10. After graduating, her R4L coordinator wrote a letter of recommendation. The letter and her good grades got her a scholarship. Last year we shared that she had graduated as a doctor and was now serving back at her village in Newcastle. Above, Doctor Happy Shezi is pictured with her coordinator, Thabisile. We’re proud of how she stood strong in her faith while in a foreign country not receptive to Christianity, and was even able to lead others there to faith in Christ.  She shares, "I am that I am because Christ came into my life. I don’t know how my life would have turned out if it was not for the Lord. The little R4L Bible impacted my life forever. Every child that receives this program stands a chance to be what God has created them to be. According to my poor background and negative environment I stood no chance. But Gods word became light unto my feet, I found a way to live right as a young person. Today I have built my mom a house and got myself a car. All of this is the result of a transformed young life. I will forever thank God for the Reach4Life Program.”

Mozambique Team is Growing!

The Mozambique Reach4Life family is growing! The Peer Educators above camped together for two days, sharing ideas and equipping each other. They welcomed their seventeen newly trained Peer Educators as well. All of this was coordinated by country coordinator Merson Tete (standing, front row, right). This team started with four Peer Educators and has expanded to this awesome, hard working group of Kingdom workers!   

"You Have Given Us Hope"

Londeka Mqamu, age 17, grade 11, Mabaso High School, Tugela Ferry, says, 

“This is my second year participating in the R4L groups in my school. I can see a big change in my life since I started reading the R4L Bible. Firstly I was not a believer now I am, then I changed the bad friends I used to have and gotten new ones that love the Lord like I do. The topics in the book are life changing. I thank the people who brought R4L in my school, you have given us hope.”  

Office Begins Neighborhood Substance Abuse Outreach

This drug rehab R4L club (above) meets every Friday on the rehab sports ground. Jabu, one of the drug rehab R4L coordinators, is shown leading the group in song (Lord we surrender all to you) as this is their last day at this rehab facility. They have gone through the R4L program for 8 months as one of their rehabilitation programs. Many of them have given their lives to Christ. However, this is not the last time they will see Jabu and other Peer Educators, because the main office (Phakama, in Soweto) has just launched ongoing R4L support groups. Currently there are about 148 attendees each week on different days. Community social workers have volunteered to help with this initiative. The office will be able to give information to walk-ins on substance abuse issues, refer them to rehabilitation facilities or other services, and provide long-term follow-up through support groups.   

Auction Results and Clothing Drive Info

Our 2022 auction results total $14,454. This compares to our 2021 auction total of $16,564. However, we have been raising funds for “Bucks4Bibles” at the same time. One of our supporting churches, Des Moines Gospel Chapel, has been able to raise $9,600!  (Thank you!) Taken together, we actually exceeded our goal. We’re raising additional funds for Bibles because Biblica has advised us that the level of Bible donations will be very low next year. (In past years, we have bought some and they have donated some.) They developed a R4L app, which is cost-effective in that there is no printing or shipping cost, but unfortunately the vast majority of our school students don’t have a phone. If they do have a phone, it’s hard to find money for air time and also for data (internet access). In addition, the power grid is failing dramatically so it is difficult to keep phones charged. If you would like to donate for Reach4Life Bibles, please visit our website. On the second page of the payment process, select “R4L Bibles” from the projects dropdown box.

We'll load the last of our clothes for the clothing drive on Friday, Nov 11, at 7 p.m. If you are able to help, please let us know. We will be loading about 4,000 lbs. which should only take about 30 minutes. Our goal for the summer was 20,000 lbs. We are at around 22,520 lbs. and hope to get to 23,000 lbs. before November 11, which is the last day we can take donations. Thanks for your help with the auction, clothing drive, and new church building project (above). We couldn’t do it without you! 

Progress Report for October

In the month of October, there were 14,871 English and 873 Portuguese R4L Bibles distributed.  Representing these distributions are Umthatha High School, Eastern Cape (above) and Sigweje High School, KwaZulu-Natal (below).  In all: 

28 new schools were launched

17 new churches started R4L groups

 3 New prisons launched

 3 New Drug rehabs launched

Pastor Training!

Pastor Training in Manguzi, South Africa

At this pastor training, Pastor Emmanuel Nazama (Thandy's husband and overseer of pastor training, church plants, and church buildings) taught on understanding the call of God, how to prepare a sermon and pitfalls of leaders.  Thandy reports, "We walk into each training to a room that is packed with drained leaders who are lonely, hurting, and about to give up in many cases. But two days later, there's life in their eyes, their faces are brighter, their shoulders are lifted, and above all, their love for God and His work is revived deep within their hearts. The prayer session after each teaching will move every heart as leaders cry out to God, saying they are willing to do what is right before the Lord, and His work. This was a drive of 18 hours to and from this region, but our joy makes us not to even feel the long hours as we do this amazing work which we are humbled to be a part of. We are thankful for the pastor training funds that we receive." Siyabonga (thank you)!

"No Longer Worshipping Ancestors"

Pastor David Hlomuka, Zion Emfuleni Church (above), says, “In our church we were trained to know and believe both in God and ancestors. This is my second time coming to the Leadership training, I came in 2019 and I could see we were not the proper church of Christ, we were not saved because we did not believe in Jesus dying for us and how we are to surrender our lives to Him alone. I went back and called the other leaders. It was hard. Some left the church but a few stayed and we are now slowly learning about Christ and no longer worshipping ancestors." His goal for the training was " to learn how to lead a born-again church using God’s word, and how to apply Christ like principles in all we do as a church.”

It's Hard to Even Keep the Lights On"

Pastor Lukhele of Christ Family Bible Church says, “I stood up during the training to ask a question about church finances. As a full time Pastor who has no income I find it hard to keep even the lights on in the church. Church members are not giving much, I pastor in a very poor village, everything and everyone depends on me, but I too am struggling. I find myself exhausted and drained each day. There was a chapter on church finances....I was answered in a way that brought hope in my heart. The training has helped us a lot.” 

More Pastors Being Trained as Leadership Trainers

Pictured above (left to right) are Pastor BM Buthelezi (Facilitator and R4L Coordinator), Pastor Enoch Mvelase (Secretary of the Pastors Fraternal in Manguzi), Pastor Tembe (from the royal family), Pastor Emmanuel Nazama and his wife, R4L director, Thandy.  Thandy reports, “The last time we were in this area was in 2019. We had a moment of silence for pastors who were present in the 2019 training, who passed away due to Covid. About 22 Pastors had died. Their families were invited, and all the Pastors prayed with them and the churches that are now left without leaders. Very few have had the opportunity for Bible school training so we also want to thank Sharon Dutra of Be Transformed Ministries for providing additional discipleship books to these pastors."


Because so many pastors need training, Pastor Emmanuel is training other pastors to be leadership trainers. In this session, Pastor Hadebe (pastor of the new Tugela Ferry church, see first article) did a great job on how to train and mentor leaders in a church. Pastor BM Buthelezi, Faith Mission, focused on family and ministry. He has been a Reach4Life coordinator in the Mpangeni region for 5 years.


Pastor Tembe (center, above) is the President of the Manguzi Church Council. He arranged for the pastors to attend and welcomed all who came, some from miles away. He reports, "This program is God’s healing tool to His church. The last time you were here was 2019, we had no idea that the world was about to stand still due to Covid. The teachings of that training sustained a lot of us in these past two years. We learned how to lead God’s people and when that tough season came we were able to stand strong and lead God’s church till now. That training has produced results we can see that because since then we have received fewer complains from the community about disturbing behaviours or ungodly practices by leaders in the communities.”  


"She Has Taught Us So Much"

Zolile, 16, Hlanganani High School, says, “I am standing next to Lungi who has been my Peer educator from January this year. She has taught us so much. I now know that the Bible is the Word of God and that all scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 2 Timothy 3:16. My heart is full of joy that I am the child of the light, and I must live a holy life, keeping my body pure till marriage.”  

"I Know My Secret"

Nontethelelo Hlatshwayo, Grade 9, Kwaphayikeni High School, shares, “I was a very shy person who had no confidence. I joined a R4L group in my school and I learned that I am wonderfully and fearfully made by God. I should not look down on my self or allow anyone to make me feel unworthy. My grades are higher because I participate more in class and the teachers are saying I have improved in everything. I know my secret, it’s the new life in Christ that has made me a better person. Reach 4Life is a program that makes us better people.”  

R4L in Illovo Orphanage

Coordinator Jacky (right) is delivering R4L books to an orphanage in Illovo (yes, that's an "I" and two "l's") township. There are 342 orphans that will be taken through the program by trained Peer Educators such as Lwazi (left), who is responsible for this new group!  

R4L Spreads in Zimbabwe!

Vivian is a Sunday School teacher in South Africa. She has introduced her church in Zimbabwe to the R4L program and they are spreading it to other neighboring churches in Harare. A pastor in another area of Zimbabwe has started groups there, also. A training is planned for Zimbabwe in March of 2023. 


"We Want to Be Examples"

Sizo Mpongose (left), age 13, is a girls' club leader in Port Shepstone, Ebhoyibhoyi village. She reports, "Reach4Life has given us something to do on weekends. Unlike before where we will get in trouble because we are bored at home. No we are focused teenagers, we love the Lord and we want to be examples to other teens. That you can live right at a young age. Reach4Life is fun and exciting, it hides nothing, every subject covered in the Bible is important to us as teens.” 

"Wow, I Was Speechless"

Siyabonga Dlodlo, third year varsity student in Durban, says, “I joined R4L when I was in grade 11. Now I am a Peer Educator. I lead two groups - one in my local church back home at Mlazi township and one here at the varsity. We are a Great Commission family, we take soul winning seriously. This year I went to the PE camp, wow I was speechless. The R4L teams are an army of God, bulldozing schools, prisons, and any platform. Thank you to our funding family, we get trainings, mentorship, and all kind of resources so we can teach the Bibles to our peers.”  

"He Was a New Man"

Mama Mthiyane (left) shares, “In 2019 I came with my Pastor husband at this training, unfortunately he contracted Covid in 2020 and passed away. These past two days have brought so many memories of how encouraged he was after the training. It was like he was a new man; he made some wonderful changes at church which have helped now that he is with the Lord. New leadership has been appointed and I am happy that a year before my husband passed away, he had a chance to attend this transforming workshop. I am at peace and looking forward to all that God is going to do. I brought the whole leadership in this workshop this year, and they are all happy they are here, and they are learning a lot. Grateful for the material we received, the training manual and the New Beginnings book, these tools are a blessing to us. We thank God for all of you who always think of us.”  

The current Rand exchange rate is EXCELLENT at 18.3 Rand per dollar!

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