Church-planting in Bellville South, Cape Town, South Africa is messy, hard, and sometimes downright ugly. The day-to-day situations faced by Mario and Quinton Maneville are difficult for many of us to even comprehend. You will not find glamor or sensationalism in Mario and Quinton’s reports. In fact, they often downplay actual events lest others struggle to believe them. But there are amazing stories born out of the daily grind of gospel faithfulness in a very hard place.
New Member’s Brother Murdered
Ricky is one of the newest converts in Reformed Faith Mission Community Church. We shared his incredible story in an earlier post – how the Lord saved him from life in the gangs and he was now being discipled in the church by a former enemy from a rival gang. Recently I received a voice message from Mario that Ricky’s brother had been murdered in gang violence. Ricky was under tremendous pressure from family members to take up a gun and avenge his brother’s death. He has testified to the church that God alone is sustaining him through this terrible trial. (Ricky is in the red shirt – at a church prayer meeting) Mario and Quinton are trying to visit the brother’s gang and share the gospel with them before further violence occurs. Please pray for Ricky, for the Maneville brothers, and for the church as they live out the gospel amidst such deep spiritual darkness.
Quinton can be seen in the photo above, evangelizing on the infamous street known as “Hell’s Kitchen”, and in the photo below-left, street-preaching with a portable P.A. system purchased by HeartCry. In his recent report, he describes some of the men who are attending his evangelistic breakfast Bible-studies twice a week:
Evangelistic Breakfast Bible Study
“I have also started to meet with some men in our community twice a week for breakfast. After breakfast, we go through the Scriptures and I make sure to share the gospel at each occasion. We are currently working through the gospel of John and it is amazing. Here is some background on a couple of men I meet with:
Randall is 35 years old, a gangster who spent time in prison. In fact, he used to be part of the gang where I was a member. What makes it a special opportunity for me to minister the gospel to him is the fact that I was the one who influenced him to become a gangster and introduced him to drugs. This is obviously not something I am proud of, but I see it as God’s grace to me, that He would now use me to lead this man to Him.
A few years ago, while I was trying to share the gospel with Randall (right – reading the Bible with a friend after breakfast), he told me that the Bible is a white man’s book. I continued to call on him and challenge him with the gospel. It has been a few years now, and I have seen how God restored the trust between us. It is just so amazing to now be able to share God’s word with him.
Justin is 20 years old. This young man was left for dead after his friends brutally assaulted him. They drove him to an abandoned place and chucked him out thinking he was dead. After I learned of this, I immediately contacted him and invited him to have lunch with me. We spoke about life and I shared the gospel with him. He told me that he wished many times to change his life but he never understood the gospel.
Justin is the son of one of my close relatives. In fact, his mother’s family is not too happy that he is meeting with me. Justin’s father used to be my right hand man and best friend when I was in the gangs. Justin does not know his father and has been estranged from him since his birth. They recently connected over the phone and plan to meet and reconcile.
Both Justin and Randall come from the ‘Old Apostolic’ religion common in our area. Old Apostles basically don’t believe in a literal Hell, but conveniently believe in a literal heaven, which their priests have the keys to. They believe that Jesus has already died for their sin so they can live as they want to live.”
Please pray for these men, and others that I am meeting regularly with, that they would repent and believe the gospel, as powerful testimonies to the transforming power of Jesus Christ.
Before his current role at HeartCry, S.R. served several years in pastoral ministry, and a few years in Zambia, Africa as a missionary. He is also a veteran of the Marine Corps. S.R. and his wife have been blessed with 3 children and 4 grandchildren. They live near Christiansburg, VA in the beautiful Blue Ridge mountains, where he enjoys deer hunting and fly-fishing for trout.More By S.R.