Editor’s note: The following is an update from Rev. Antonio Coppola on his work and ministry in South Africa. Earlier this year, he wrote an article discussing his church-planting efforts at Covenant Waterfall Presbyterian Church, as well as his work at Mukhanyo Theological College in Durban. We hope you will join us in praying for Rev. Coppola and the spread of the Reformed confession in South Africa.
Growing Church Life
We are thankful to the Lord for a positive start to this year. Our two interns, Alex and Brendan have added much value to the life of our church. Brendan has been great in connecting with people in our community. He has started a weekly small group out of these people with whom he has connected, which performs an evangelistic function. Alex has been a great help with teaching and preaching and assisting in leadership matters.
We have hosted two fellowship meals this year which attracted many new faces, some of whom have stuck around and are now attending services regularly. I’ve taken another pause in preaching through Genesis and have now started preaching through 1 Timothy.
Mukhanyo Durban Update
We recently purchased our own beautiful premises after having rented premises for the past three years. We now have space for four lecturing venues, vast office space, a much bigger library, a student study area, and secure outdoor area.
We’ve welcomed three new staff members this year: a full-time administrator and two new part-time lecturers. We have sixteen students in our Higher Certificate and Bachelor of Theology programmes. As the only accredited Bible college in the Durban area, we are working to expand our reach among churches in the region in order to better serve the local church through quality theological education.
Visit from Dr. David VanDrunen
In January, Dr. David VanDrunen, one of my professors from Westminster Seminary California, came out to do some teaching on Christ and culture at Covenant Waterfall and Mukhanyo Durban. He had spent just over a week teaching some modules for Mukhanyo’s ThM programme in Pretoria, and then spent a few days here in Durban. He did a full morning of teaching with our Mukhanyo students and pastors from around the area, and then did an evening session at the church. We are grateful for his ministry to us, which was very well received!
In October last year I travelled to the United States. I attended the missions conference of First Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Chattanooga, Tennessee. First Pres has been supporting Covenant Waterfall, and so we are grateful for their partnership with us. I got to share about the ministry work at the conference and really enjoyed connecting with their leaders and members of the congregation, who were extremely generous and kind to me. I was also privileged to be a part of a panel discussion about ministry in a postmodern context at Covenant College in Georgia. It was wonderful to catch up with Dr Dennis and Jane Johnson, from my Westminster California and New Life Escondido days, who now live in Tennessee.
I also got to spend some time in North Carolina with family in Chapel Hill and attended Christ Community Church in Chapel Hill. Then I was back in California catching up with special friends. I got to do a ministry presentation at Westminster Seminary California and New Life Escondido, who is also a faithful ministry partner.
Please pray for:
- Thanksgiving to the Lord for answering praying in sending us new people!
- Our evangelistically-orientated small group, that the Lord would continue to draw people to it and our church.
- For our children’s ministry, that the Lord would send us new families and help to grow the ministry.
- For the Lord to raise up new leadership in our church.
- For our interns, Alex and Brendan as they serve our church.
For wisdom and strength for me as I minister God’s Word most weeks.
- For a gospel reformation in the churches throughout Durban.
Antonio Coppola, Pastor of Covenant Waterfall Presbyterian Church
Church website: https://covenantwaterfall.co.za/
Mukhanyo website: www.mukhanyo.ac.za
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