St Paul’s Epistle 22 July 2021

Dear People of St Pauls

God is with us

At our virtual Parish Council meeting on Tuesday evening this week our treasurer, Dr Bomi Nomlala, led our devotions, reading from Joshua 1:9 “I hereby command you: Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”  These were very encouraging words for us and indeed are for us all.

Members shared their experiences of last week: a member living in the CBD spoke of what seemed to be the start of the looting there and the ongoing theft of goods over a few days, with little that could be done to stop it; one of the youth members had to escape from a burning building (City Life) in the CBD and is now living elsewhere; a member who lives in Phoenix spoke of the fear that was felt from the killings that took place there and the threat of further killings, and the number of burnt out cars he saw when he could drive around; those staying at the church were kept up at night with the sounds of gun shots and then saw the Workshop (opposite the church) set alight.

We agreed that the events of last week should not pass without further reflection, analysis and action.  We need to work towards a society in which all people can flourish, having at least their basic needs met.

Through our personal experience and through the images we have seen we have suffered various degrees of trauma. One of the best ways to deal with trauma is to talk to someone about your experiences.

As the church, let us be a praying presence, a listening ear and a helping hand, as we work towards healing, rebuilding and restructuring our society.

At the end I have listed various contact details of various NGO and other professional organisations that may be of help for those needing further support (See Resources).

Archbishop’s comment

The following is a link to a short video of an interview of Archbishop Thabo.

Short term help

St Paul’s received a kind donation from a colleague of mine in Cape Town, to be used for relief in terms of food and medicines in this present crisis.   If you have a particular need in this area please contact our church warden, Keith Mbambo.

There are various organisations offering free food parcels in Durban.  I mention two I have come across:  Vicknesh 0834510437, giving your name, telephone number, address and number of people in the family and they will deliver. The Gift of the Givers has arranged drop off points for people to go and collect food. It is being advertised as being for the “poor or rich; anyone can collect; no questions asked, groceries for a month.”  Contact numbers:  0800 786 911   or    083 236 4029.

[There is obviously a great demand for these services as both cell phone numbers I tried had full mailboxes and the 0800 number went unanswered]

Help for Businesses

Conscious that some of our members’ businesses have suffered from the events of the past week (and at last one destroyed) I pass on the following which I received:

“Are you a small business owner? Are your products looted? Is your business directly or totally destroyed as a result of on going social unrest? WE WANT TO HELP To apply for assistance . From their website I see one can apply to them for “virtual one-on-one trauma counselling and special business recovery mentorship.

Fr Michael Lapsley –Thursday 22 July 18.30-19.30

Hosted by the Southern African Catholic Bishops Conference (SACBC) there will be a talk via Zoom this evening by Fr Michael Lapsley, Anglican priest and president of the Healing of Memories Global Network on the topic “How do we find God’s hope and healing as a nation after recent unrest and political turmoil?”  Details to connect: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81531861371?pwd=TUJoZVROYmVlYlcvOFdHMTNrSjJMdz09

Meeting ID: 815 3186 1371         Passcode: 942279

 The Diocesan Prayer Diary for July

This may be accessed  here on our website

 Sunday 25 July “On-line” sermon

Our preacher this Sunday will be Revd Kayla Urbasch, a deacon at St James-with-St Peter, Greytown

Diocesan Prayer Meeting on Sunday 25 July (14.00-15.00) via Zoom

All are welcome to join in:

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81916023330?pwd=TTdpcE5aLzRtVWpMQWtZUytJSGI0dz09

Meeting ID: 819 1602 3330           Passcode: 133410

Resources

This week “We Will Speak Out and KZN Network on Violence Against Women sent out the following updated contact list for those experiencing abuse or violence of any kind, or feeling depressed or suicidal.  (Most of the numbers are free or will call you back)

  • Gender-Based Violence National Hotline: *120*7867# Free platform. A social worker will call you back.
  • GBV Hotline: 0800 428 428
  • Stop Gender Violence – Rape Crisis: 0800 150 150
  • SAPS Crime Stop: 0860 10111
  • SAPS (GBV-Related complaints): 0800 333 177
  • CGE (Commission for Gender Equality): 0800 007 709
  • National AIDS Helpline: 0800 012 322
  • Human Trafficking Hotline: 0800 222 777
  • Shelters: Central helpline 0800 001 005, SMS, WhatsApp or Please Call Me: 082 057 8600 / 082 058 2215 / 072 230 7147/ infohelpline@womenscentre.co.za
  • GBV Support Groups (to start one in your area): admin@phephisa.org.za
  • Childline: 08000 555 55
  • FAMSA Family Crisis: 021 447 7951
  • Lifeline Counselling: 0861 322 322
  • Suicide, Substance Abuse and Crisis Helpline (SADAG): 080012 13 14 or 0800 567 567
  • Substance Abuse Helpline: AA Helpline – 0861 435 7221; NA Helpline – 083 900 6962.
  • Substance Abuse – Family Support Alanon: 0861 252 666
  • LGBTI Crisis Helpline: 076 981 1052 (LGBTI Centre Durban)
  • Hate Crimes Hotline: 0800 150 150 012 315 1111
  • COVID Helpline: 0800 029 999
  • KZN Prayer Tree Project: 082 254 793

Final

Remember to keep the health and safety Covid protocols has infections are rising again.

God bless.

Yours in Christ

Revd Dr Andrew Warmback