who we are
Fred and Lucille May started Shofar Christian Church in Stellenbosch, South Africa in 1992. Since then, we’ve grown from a student fellowship to an international, multi-generational, multi-cultural church family with congregations in South Africa, Namibia, the United Kingdom, Burundi, Malawi and the Netherlands.
We have more than 60 churches, with everything from lively young congregations in cities to family-orientated churches in farming towns. We also have a growing number of new church plants, as well as fellowship groups and streaming locations. Take a look at the map to find a church near you.
Our name, ‘Shofar’ (pronounced ‘show far’), is the Hebrew word for the ceremonial ram’s horn. In Biblical times, the shofar had several uses (all of which are significant to who we are). It was used to announce the advent of times and seasons. It was a pitcher for the oil used for anointing and inducting kings and priests. It also signalled a summons to war. The shofar is a metaphor for prophetic urgency, authority and mobilisation.
what we believe
We believe that God exists, and that He’s nearer, grander and more awesome than we realise. We believe that the Bible is the supreme authority and guidebook for daily living, that Jesus Christ is God showing Himself to us – completely and finally, and that the Holy Spirit is God living in and through us. We believe that mankind is sinful by nature and in desperate need of a Saviour to transform us and our destiny. And we believe the church is the environment in which we grow in love for other people and for God.
vision, values & statement of faith
Our purpose statement is the vision God has given us as a church family. It is to reach nations and generations through disciple-making, leadership development and church planting. Our core values shape how we live out the vision God has given us. Our statement of faith explains what we believe in more detail.
Passion speaks of love for Jesus – the Father’s emphatic, blazing love to and through us. This love lends legitimacy to who we are and what we do.
people to serve
People are our core business. To serve them flows naturally from this passion. Leadership happens when we commit to serve and grow others.
power of belief
Power is the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Profound belief sustains this inspiration and makes for change, growth and accomplishment.
purpose to pursue
Purpose is an inheritance everyone has from God. It is a uniquely crafted, person-specific progression of assignments. Finding and engaging it brings the reward of ultimate affirmation.
STATEMENT OF FAITH
We believe that Jesus Christ was begotten of the Father, conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary and is true God and true man. We believe that God created man in His own image; that man sinned and thereby incurred the penalty of sin which is death physically and spiritually; that all human beings inherit a sinful nature which issues (in the case of those who reach moral responsibility) in actual transgression involving personal guilt.
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ died for our sins a substitutionary sacrifice according to the Scriptures and that all who believe in Him are justified on the grounds of His shed blood.
We believe in the bodily resurrection of the Lord Jesus, His ascension into Heaven, and His present life as our High Priest and Advocate. We believe in the personal return of the Lord Jesus Christ.
We believe that all that repent of their sin and receive the Lord Jesus Christ by faith are born again of the Holy Spirit and thereby become children of God.
We believe in the baptism in the Holy Spirit, empowering and equipping believers for service, with the accompanying supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit; and in fellowship with the Holy Spirit.
We believe in the divinely ordained ministries of Apostle, Prophet, Evangelist, Pastor and Teacher. With regards to submission to authority, we believe in the principle of being in authority because you are under authority. As such, it is understood that membership shall be subject to submission to authority in matters pertaining to church governance, doctrine and personal behaviour.
We believe in the resurrection of both the just and the unjust, the eternal blessedness of the redeemed, and the eternal banishment of those who have rejected the offer of salvation.
We believe that the one true Church is the whole company of those who have been redeemed by Jesus Christ and regenerated by the Holy Spirit; that the local church on earth should take its character from this concept of the Church spiritual and therefore, that the new birth and personal confession of Christ are essentials of church membership.
We believe that the Lord Jesus Christ appointed two ordinances – baptism in water and the Lord’s Supper to be observed as acts of obedience and as perpetual witnesses to the cardinal facts of the Christian faith, that baptism is the immersion of the believer in water as a confession of identification with Christ in burial and resurrection and that the Lord’s Supper is the partaking of the emblems symbolic of the Saviour’s broken body and shed blood, in remembrance of His sacrificial death, until He comes.
We believe that divine healing was provided for in the Old and New Testament and is an integral part of the Gospel.
We believe that the Bible teaches that without holiness no man can see the Lord.
We believe in the doctrine of sanctification as a definite, yet progressive work of grace, commencing at the time of the new birth and continuing until the consummation of salvation.
We believe the leadership of the local church has the authority from the scriptures to withdraw the membership of any member for serious, unrepentant misconduct or similar cause.
The Church is open to any further truth, which the Holy Spirit may illuminate from the Scriptures.
what we do
Church is so much more than just a Sunday service. We’re an active church family that enjoys living life together, growing in faith, learning about God and working to see His kingdom come in our families and communities. Everything we do is shaped by the vision God’s given us to reach nations and generations through disciple-making, leadership development and church planting. We believe that all of us are called to be part of the vision, either directly as a church planter or as a support to those who are actively working to plant churches.
Volunteers are the heart of the church – without this awesome community of people it simply wouldn’t be possible to live out the vision God has given us. Each person who gives their time and energy to serving in church is literally the hands and feet that make it possible for us to see God’s kingdom grow. Find out from your local congregation where you can volunteer your time.
Jesus is unequivocal about our responsibility, as His Church, to take action in a world that’s devastated by injustice, poverty and violence. The Cyrus Trust is the platform through which we run both our own non-profit organisations and come alongside others who are working in community and enterprise development. Through our network of NGOs we work to empower, support, educate and train, at the same time creating accessible opportunities for our church family to be directly involved in local communities. The organisations include Bridging Abilities, Prochorus Community Development,Relief.Life Disaster Management, Kibwe Kids, Community Keepers, the School of Theology, Amplified and Inspired2Become Youth Development. Visit the Cyrus Trust website if you’d like to get involved.
We believe that structured leadership and governance is a vital part of any church. Without clear leadership, we’d have a very hard time working together, keeping order and making wise decisions. Ultimately, Jesus is the head of the church. And not just the global Church that’s made up of all believers around the world, but also of our local church. Our leaders are simply men and women who’ve shown that they are faithful in following Jesus and encouraging others to do the same.
We believe that it’s vital to be part of the greater global church and play an active role in encouraging healthy relationships between local churches. That’s why we’re not only working to build a strong network of churches but are also part of national and international Christian bodies and groups. Through the Shofar Network, more than 1000 churches have access to our discipleship training and materials and our Letsgo mission teams assist them with evangelism and training.
Empowered21 is the largest interdenominational movement uniting Spirit-filled churches and ministries across the globe. As Shofar, we form part of Empowered21 Africa, with Anton Myburgh fulfilling leadership roles on the African Cabinet.