Friday, February 1, 2008

Farewell Mitch and Miri

It is with sadness that we bid farewell to Mitch and Miri Hardy. They have spent the last 9 months working on the 2010 campaign in South Africa. They have made a huge impact on the lives of many people in South Africa (see previous blog).

They were involved in numerous projects from teaching Sunday School to 100+ children at Sherwood to helping at the BEC in Durban, to running Seminars, to running Kingdom Youth Days. However the biggest contribution was the Kingdom Youth FC program.
Equipped with only the seeds of an idea they designed the entire Kingdom Youth FC program and then ran it all over South Africa. Kingdom Youth FC is a program that used soccer to teach young people about the Good News of the Kingdom of God. For example there may be a session where the young people are asked to play a game of soccer but the goal posts are removed. After a while the begin to ask what the purpose of the game is. This then leads on to teaching them about the importance of goals in life, and the ultimate goal of being in God's Kingdom. And so the program continues teaching them all the key aspects of God's Good News through the living parable of soccer.

Mitch and Miri have run this program for hundreds of young people in many townships around South Africa. Their major focus has been in the Marianhill area (about 15km from Durban). And it is here that they have built up a very keen following among the young people. A following that has already seen the first fruits as 3 of them were baptised last week.

It was beautiful to see the tribute the young people paid to Mitch and Miri on Sunday (knowing this was the last time they would see them). They enacted the teaching program they had received, giving a beautiful glimpse into what they have learnt. And then in a show of ultimate acceptance into their family they had them sit down and presented them with a blanket.

And so with hardly any dry eyes we all bade farewell to Mitch and Miri.
We pray our Father that he will bless them as the contiue with their good work back in Australia. And we also pray that the Lord will send others to continue the good work they have started here and help bring many more, who eagerly thirst for the Good News, into God's family.
"And now, (our) friends, good-bye!....(may) the God of love and peace will be with you." (2Co 13:11)

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