Siya was discipled for a time by HeartCry missionary pastors Richard Raven and Tsholo Kukuni. He later completed a pastoral internship with their sending church, Emmanuel Baptist Church. Emmanuel Baptist then ordained Siya as an elder and they have sent him to establish a new church in Ruimsig.
Testimony of Conversion
My name is Siyabulela Pantshwa (Siya). I was born in Mthatha, a small town situated in the Eastern Cape. I was brought up in a non-Christian home, and any interest we had in Christianity came from a basic curiosity in religious activity.
I believe I was exposed to the Good News of Jesus Christ through the ministry of Billy Graham. On the weekends I watched his evangelistic crusades with a keen interest, admiring his ‘impassioned speeches.’ His preaching always left me convicted concerning ‘sin, and righteousness, and judgment.’ I knew I was a sinner, and I was very fearful of dying.
I cannot point to an exact date, however, I eventually placed my faith in Christ Jesus in the year 2009. I believed that He shed His blood to ransom my soul. I could say with the great Apostle, “The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost.” I knew I was forgiven based on the merits of Jesus Christ alone, and I thought it gain to leave this world and be with Christ.
Call to Ministry
In early 2015, I was taken into the membership of a church in Bloemfontein known as Hope Bible Church. At that time the church was pastored by Richard Raven and Tsholo Kukuni, and I had the opportunity to serve within the church after I expressed a desire to pursue full-time ministry.
In late 2016, I worked as a Pastoral Intern at Emmanuel Baptist Church in Johannesburg, under the mentorship of Gus Pritchard, who was senior pastor at the time.
In early 2018, Emmanuel Baptist Church formally recognized me as one of its elders. In the same year, I worked as interim co-pastor, due to Gus’s departure. And, by the grace of God, I am currently serving as one of the elders at Emmanuel Baptist, in the role of missionary pastor over the Ruimsig Community Church.