We are Anglican
St John's church is the original church of a large Parish. Over the years the Parish has grown and now there are 6 churches and The Warehouse. We are part of the local Archdeaconry and the diocese of Table Bay.
Being Anglican we are part of a great historic tradition that has been, in the past, a predominantly English speaking church. 100 years ago the average Anglican was a white male. Today the average Anglican is black, female and probably in their late 30’s. The balance of power has shifted to the global south. The Anglican church has changed and continues to change.
The Anglican church is a reformation church. Doctrinally and in church practice it is tied to the protestant reformation. If you look back at church history there times of great upheaval. The Great Schism of 1054 where the church of the East (what we see today as the Orthodox Church) and the church of the West split apart for political and doctrinal reasons
The Reformation which again included a number of factors both doctrinal and political is the birth place of the church which ultimately lead to Henry VIII, then King of England, to break away from the Church in Rome and claim independence and autonomy as the Church in England. Henry effectively made himself the head of the Church and Foundational documents of the Anglican church were the 39 articles. Justification by faith alone.
We are Evangelical
The word comes from the evangel ‘The Gospel’. We take the Gospel (The Good news) seriously. We believe that Jesus came as a liberator and rescuer from sin so that we can know God and have a personal and intimate relationship with the Father because of the son and through the Holy Spirit. What Jesus did on the cross atoned for our sin. That gift is a free gift. We can do nothing to earn salvation. But God choose to pour himself out for us. The cross, then, is what John Stott calls "the self substitution of God."
As Evangelicals we take God’s word seriously. We are committed to reading it, trying to understand it within its historical context. We are committed to wrestling with parts that are complex or at times not always straight -forward or clear. We have a high view of scripture. That is why I often say in my sermons: "Read it alongside me". The Reformation for the first time in human history put the bible in the hands of the people.
We are Charismatic
We are open to, and want to explore the work of and gifts of the Holy Spirit. Some have said the 20th century was the century of the Holy Spirit. That's debatable, but we believe in the power of God’s spirit to change and transform us in a number of ways.
Inwardly – God by his spirit can change hearts of stone to flesh, restore damaged emotions, past hurts and pains.
Physically – God by his spirit can restore bodies and heal us physically.
We want to create space in our services to hear what the Spirit is saying to us. To allow rooms for his transformative work in us through laying on of hands and expecting manifestations of his presence in a variety of ways.
We are unified in our diversity
We are not homogeneous. We are not all the same. We come from a variety of backgrounds and cultures. Building true multicultural community is hard work and takes sustained, intentional decisions. No one culture should dominate. We celebrate that we are different. Its part of nation building given our divided past. We say we want to be ‘unified in reconciled diversity’ - not grin and bear it but truly making attempts to connect with one another across our barriers.
We are a family of families
We rejoice in being cross generational. From 6 months to 90+ years. Families sometimes fight with each other but we are called to bear with one another. We have children, youth and young adults
We listen to and make room for each other. We will increasingly allow children space to minister with us and to us.
We value the wisdom and experience of older generations and seek to honour those older than ourselves. We make space to serve together.
We are Christ-centred
Being Christ-centred means we see Jesus' life and witness as our primary model for ministry. We are committed to reading scripture christologically. We seek to make our purpose and function to bring glory to Jesus as we engage and reach out.
We are Mission-Shaped
Being Mission-shaped means being committed to listening to the Spirit of God and the community in which we find ourselves situated. We believe that it's not the church that has a mission, but the God of mission who has a church. We are invited to follow Him in all he does. To this end we desire to engage our community and find ways of serving the marginalised, lonely, broken and lost with the good news of Jesus Christ.