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Pastors, we need to ‘walk in the light’

Pastors, you are loved and you have been an immense blessing. Atlantis has benefited greatly under your preaching and teaching, hard work and sacrifices, and for that I am grateful. Please know I am thankful for your time and energy spent always in labouring for the betterment of Atlantis.

Elders, pastors, shepherds equally share the responsibility for the care of the people God has entrusted to us in this region. And it is because of this conviction and a love for the church that I am compelled to speak up. I am seriously concerned about the state of the church, especially our leadership at the highest levels, and the continued in-fighting and bickering among pastors.

Relationships remain broken due to the inability and unwillingness to confront unresolved issues. The manifestation of unsolved issues in public is harmful and continues to damage the credibility of the church. In John 3:21 we read: “…whoever does what is true comes to the light, so it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”

Brothers, we must be known as a people characterised by coming towards and loving the light. Do we welcome the light, trusting God’s grace and mercy when our weaknesses and failures are exposed?

Our leadership reputation is in tatters, and we have become a mockery in the community, so many accusations are hurled at us... Some of the accusations may be groundless or exaggerated, but in many cases we have invited these controversies upon ourselves by not seeking the truth or to be in the light.

Some of the matters we have to look into are some pastors being bullies who easily accuse thinking and questioning followers as rebels, known immoral conduct of leaders going unchecked and guilty leaders continuously participating in public programmes with other leaders, and tarnishing and bringing into ill-repute their credibility and reputation.

I do not believe that looking for answers, asking questions and trying to discern the truth is necessarily a divisive or sinful thing.

Rather, this is the responsibility we have as elders, as we are called to lead our people and the church from a position of truth and love. To ask us not to do so will only further exasperate the “culture of fear” that we so desperately want to move away from. Love is speaking the truth and seeking to walk in the light, together. I know I do not stand alone in my concerns for the leadership. (Letter has been shortened. Ed.)

Pastor André Abrahams,
Atlantis
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