“It was a day of great joy and gratitude when Rev. Potwana has been inducted on 4 February at URCSA Decoligny,” says Rev. Willem Botes, who previously ministered there. “We are grateful that the congregation invited us to attend the confirmation.”
The congregation was vacant since Rev. Botes retired in March 2015. The church council has then decided that they first want to get the congregation’s activities under control before they will call another minister. After 7 years without a pastor, the congregation called Rev. Potwana (formerly from URCSA Khayelitsha).
The programme of the induction began at 10:00 when a number of church council members and church members welcomed Rev. Potwana and his wife at the Shell Ultra City outside Mthatha. They then escorted him and his wife to the church building of URCSA Decoligny, and from there to the parsonage where their ministry was devoted to the Lord with Scripture reading and prayer.
The key was then handed over to Mrs. Potwana to unlock the front door. The pastors and their wives could then walk through the house and view the beautiful furniture that the church council had donated to their new pastor.
Afterwards, everyone went back to the church building where the induction took place. The service was led by Rev. Tyala and the induction was conducted by Rev. Maeka from URCSA Isilimela / Mzimvubu congregation, the relieving minister (consulent) of Decoligny.
The pastors and church council members present then had the opportunity to wish Rev. Potwana and his wife God’s blessing on his ministry in the congregation. Afterwards there were speeches of welcome by delegates from the congregation, the Presbytery of Mthatha and various visitors from other congregations.
After the proceedings in the church, all the guests were invited to the Bet-El Conference Hall of the congregation and the big tent next to the hall for a delicious meal. There was a lot of joy and excitement among the members about their new minister.
By 17:30 the guests started to leave, and everything started to get ready for Sunday’s worship service and Holy Communion, which was led by Rev. Potwana.
This day was also a big day for Rev. Botes and his wife, because a circle has been completed for them. Forty-seven years before, on 4 February 1976, they arrived in the Transkei to minister in Isilimela congregation for the beginning of their 39-year ministry in the Transkei. Now, after 47 years, the congregation where they have worked since 1984, Decoligny Congregation, has received a new pastor.
“We thank the Lord that we were able to experience this happy day together with Decoligny Congregation,” says Rev. Botes.