Prop. Dewald Jacobs is a born and bred Bolander. He was born on the 13th of March 1995 to his parents, Damon and Denise Jacobs at Wellington where he also completed his school years at Huguenot Primary and Huguenot High School.
“I was born in a Christian home and God has always been an integral part of my life and upbringing. Throughout my life, my family has been a great influence, in particular my grandparents, Moos and Ella Lawrence,” Prop. Jacobs says. “They stand out as God-loving people, who devoted their lives in service of God and crossed boundaries in order for their children and grandchildren to have access to more opportunities than they could ever have dreamt of. Additionally, I would not be the person I am today if it was not for the love, care and support of my parents and the example they set for my brother and me.”
But how did it happen that Prop. Jacobs decided to become a pastor? He explains, “Ever since I was a baby, my family and especially my grandparents reiterated the story of an elder prophesying over my life, affirming that I would grow up to be a pastor. Throughout my life, there were numerous occasions, especially in my time at the Christian Youth Ministry (CYM), where other people would also affirm this calling, without ever being aware of the story of the elder. In my second year of catechism and after joining the CYM, I became aware of God’s loving work in my life and in the lives of my family and community. It was at that point that I made the conscious decision to devote my life to God.
“In 2014 I enrolled for BCom Financial Accounting at Stellenbosch University, as I mostly wanted to follow in my brother’s footsteps. However, on the 2nd of August 2015, on the day when my grandmother passed away, an overwhelming feeling of conviction was instilled in my heart. And so, while I was still studying accounting, God called me to ministry to be a witness of God’s loving deeds in our lives. I received my BCom degree in March 2017. That same year, I started with my theological studies and went on to complete my Bachelor of Divinity (Cum Laude) in 2020 and Master of Divinity in 2021.
“The title of my thesis that was done under the supervision of Prof. Jeremy Punt, was A Postcolonial approach to the encounter between Jesus and the Canaanite woman in Matthew 15: 21-28 – foregrounding the Master’s Table. This is a New Testament study that aims to shed light on how the imperial context of the Roman Empire influenced the implied author of the Matthean text’s construction of the encounter between Jesus and the Canaanite woman. The study highlights the intersectional ties and patriarchal-, imperial- and colonial tendencies at play in the encounter between Jesus and the Canaanite woman, to also problematize the patriarchal-, imperial- and colonial tendencies that are still prevalent in our modern-day context.”
He explains his vision for the Church and his future congregation as follows, “My vision for the Church is its continuous participation in the work of the Triune God in the world; according to the scriptural witness and in line with the confessions of the Church. I dream of a Church that continuously strives to be a living vessel in society that advocates for and offers love, healing, restoration, unity and justice for all. I would love to become an embedded part of a congregation and its community, joining in its witness the loving deeds of God in and through the community, and discerning where and how we are needed as God’s children.”
So, what does Prop. Jacobs do when he is not studying? He says, “I love spending time with family and friends, especially engaging in informal yet meaningful conversations. During the last two years of lockdown, I also developed a love for golf, but am painfully aware of my status as a struggling beginner, still learning the art of being a left-handed golfer. I’ve always tried to stay active and look forward to the prospect of regularly going on hikes with my friends. Sports has always been an important and enjoyable aspect of my daily life.”
But this is not the only interest he has – he is also a poet. “In the course of my theological studies I have acquired a special interest in poetry and I am honoured to now be a published Afrikaans poet,” Prop. Jacobs says. “I am intrigued by the stories and histories of our people and communities and wish to bring that to the fore through poetry. Poetry has also become a means for me to advocate against injustices in our communities such as gender-based violence.”
Contact Prop. Jacobs at [email protected] or 066 2364007 for more information.