Childhood and Education
Lyndon Mactavie was born in Worcester on 12 December 1996. His parents are Andrit and Rueben Mc Thomas, and his grandparents, Iris and Louis Mactavie graciously allowed him to reside with them. “Being the godly woman that she is, my grandma gave me the chance to accompany her to church and payer meetings,” says Lyndon, “and it was there that I first learned about God. She was the one who taught me about the Bible and I was baptised in the Congregational Church in Worcester. My grandma was someone I always looked up to for the crucial role she had in my formation as a Christian.
“When we relocated to Paarl, I went to WA Joubert Primary School and completed my secondary school education at Labori High School. My mother, my brother, and I began attending URCSA Immanuel Paarl, and felt a sense of belonging. We are still worshiping God in this amazing church today.”
Christian influence and Mentors
“Except for my grandmother who played a significant part in the development of my faith,” Lyndon continues, “God also provided me with a number of other mentors who helped me understand Christianity, including my mother, Rev. Tony Masent, Dr Samuel Pick (URCSA Immanuel Paarl), Dr Jacques Beukes (University of Pretoria), Dr Shaun Burros (final year mentor and pastor at URCSA Franschhoek), and Dr Paul Barnard (pastors at DRC Helderberg, Somerset West). I am fortunate to have these people as my mentors and to be able to communicate with them regularly.
“Because of their faith and prayers, I changed my life and began a path with God. My mother and grandmother took on the roles of Timothy’s mother, grandma Lois, and mother Eunice. As I entered high school, I began to recognise God’s purpose for my life. With the assistance of Rev. Masent and Dr Pick, my life was transformed, and I made a commitment to the living Word of God. Being the cricket player I thought I was, I was given the chance to play abroad. However, I had to put that on pause since God’s calling was so obvious that I couldn’t flee like Jonah. Instead, I seized the chance to study at Stellenbosch University and play cricket for the team.
“I consequently began meeting people from many races, religions, and backgrounds when I was studying and playing university cricket. I began reading more, and the word ‘reconciliation’ kept coming up. I wondered how I might reconcile with others every day, including my peers as well as God (vertically and horizontally). How I perceived the church and how I understood Christianity was greatly influenced by Drs Beukes, Burros, and Barnard. They accompanied me on my tour and answered all of my queries; fortunately, we are still in contact.
“I am a firm believer in reconciliation work, my special interest, and I was also a panel speaker at AVReQ on 15 June 2022 for anti-racism student activism and the reparation quest at Stellenbosch University. I am currently involved in reconciliation work with the Dutch Reformed Church, Theology Faculty and URCSA. The theme of my master’s thesis is ‘SPORT AS A MEDIUM FOR SOCIAL COHESION IN SOUTH AFRICA: Practical Theology Reflection’ as my main focus is reconciliation work, and I truly believe we can have a better South Africa.
“I also had the honour of being asked by Thuli Madonsela to speak at her Social Justice Conference, which was broadcasted across the world. I discussed how sport can serve as a catalyst for change in South Africa. I adhered to the Confession of Belhar principles of justice, reconciliation, and unity. Because of how society suppresses them, it is crucial for me to advocate for social justice and be a voice for those without one.”
Vision for the Church
“My vision for the church or future congregation are that we will be aware of the fact that the church wasn’t always what we could call a safe haven when looking at apartheid and everything else that kept people apart from one another when we look back on church history. My wish is for the congregation as a whole to work toward unity, discussing the subject of reconciliation, and to explore options for changing the name of the Uniting Reformed Church of Southern Africa to the United Reformed Church of Southern Africa. We live in a period where cooperation and an effort to unite with others — not only with God — is necessary.
“As stated in the Confession of Belhar, we should be lights of hope for those who are voiceless and marginalised because God is a God of the downtrodden. I pray that we shall live by the Word of God and make it an essential part of who we are. We should be a church where the triune God is present and where we are inclusive as well as a place where God’s love and light are present – a church where we break down any barriers that separate us from God and people.”
“My interests include reading the Bible, spending time with family and friends, playing chess, listening to and writing music and playing PlayStation. I presently have three dogs, and I adore them all. I recently took up watching Formula One and am a huge fan of Max Verstappen. I also love sport and has participated in practically all of it but God gave me the sport of cricket to use as an example of what He can accomplish through a sinner like me.”