The promise of reconciliation

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On the eve of the Day of Reconciliation, Minister of the NG Kerk in Makhanda (Grahamstown) Strauss de Jager shares the vow for peace that the congregation will be renewing at the church’s 16 December 2018 service. “It’s a commitment which might grow into a vow,” he explained this week. “In 1992 I called for a new vow, for peace. I believe it was appropriate for that time, and it is still very necessary today.”

VERBINTENIS TOT VERSOENING EN VREDE

Ons verbind onsself daartoe om:

  1. Getrou te bid dat God aan ons land en al haar mense die gawe van vrede skenk.
  2. Te bid vir alle owerheidsinstellings en hulle op te roep tot integriteit en toegewyde diens aan al die inwoners van ons land.
  3. Al ons medemense te respekteer en beter begrip en kommunikasie met almal na te jaag.
  4. Met oop gemoedere te luister na mede-landsburgers wat hul pyn en perspektiewe met ons deel.
  5. Daadwerklike en konstruktiewe optrede en bydraes te maak wat omstandighede sal verbeter.
  6. Vergiffenis aan te bied en te aanvaar om insidente van onreg te help regstel.
  7. Uit te reik na mede-landsburgers van ander taal en kultuur en mekaar beter te leer ken en waardeer.
  8. Beter verhoudinge en vriendskap na te jaag met al die medemense van ons land.
  9. Nie afbrekend en negatief te praat oor enige van ons mede-landsburgers nie, maar eerder gelowig en opbouend te dink en te praat.
  10. Jesus se saligspreking in Mat 5:9 konsekwent uit te leef: “Geseënd is die vredemakers, want hulle sal kinders van God genoem word.”

COMMITMENT TO RECONCILIATION AND PEACE

We commit ourselves to:

  1. Persevere in prayer that God will grant his gift of peace to our country and all its people.
  2. To pray for all authorities and to challenge them to integrity and faithful service to all the inhabitants of our country.
  3. To respect all our fellow human beings and pursue better understanding and communication with all.
  4. To listen with an open mind to fellow countrymen sharing their pain and perspectives with us.
  5. Act constructively and make contributions to improve conditions and situations around us.
  6. Offer and accept forgiveness in order to deal better with experiences of injustice.
  7. Reach out to our fellow countrymen from other language and culture groups in order to get to know and appreciate one another better.
  8. Pursue better relationships and friendship with all fellow human beings of our country.
  9. Not to engage in any destructive or negative talk regarding any of our fellow countrymen, but rather to think and talk with faith and a constructive attitude.
  10. Consistently follow Jesus’ beatitude as found in Matthew 5:9. “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.” (NIV).
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