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Thabo_1

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Archbishop Thabo is one of my heroes in the Anglican communion. He is archbishop of Southern Africa, he is the latest in an extraordinary line of archbishops including Desmond Tutu and others and has stood up for human rights, for the dignity of the human being in the most remarkable way; and led a church that I've found to be full of love and welcome. Your Grace, when we pray in the Lord's Prayer or in this week between Ascension and Pentecost, Thy Kingdom Come, or Your Kingdom Come, or whatever you say in Zulu or Nkosa or whatever else, what in your mind is what you're envisaging, what happens? Your Grace, thank you very much. You know when we pray Thy Kingdom Come, I'm full of excitement, I feel almost like: 'Thabo it's not about you, it’s not about the church even, but it's about really trying to discern with others the voice of God in South Africa.' And when I'm tempted to say, 'Oh my goodness, I'm being clobbered left right and centre for criticising the government of the day,' and then we say Thy Kingdom Come, I say 'Hey wait, yes of course. I'm not seeking the kingdom of the political leaders I'm not seeking the kingdom of the wealth creators, I'm seeking God's kingdom.' And so I really feel relieved that I'm participating in God's mission. And his will will be done through this tiny South African tucked in somewhere in Cape Town and though a number of God’s people. And so there's relief and a sense that I'm part of a bigger, bigger prayer said not only by myself but God's people. That's such an exciting answer. If I use a word that has resonances in an extraordinary way in South Africa, perhaps as much as many or almost all countries in the world, which is the word 'liberate' – when I was listening to you just then the word that came to mind was, when we pray Thy Kingdom Come it liberates you from self-obsession and it liberates you for the service of God. Does that make sense? It's really apt, because I feel liberated, I feel energised. I feel like, 'Hey, my struggles are pale compared to, you know, praying that God's kingdom, God's rule should englobe this or that particular situation.' You sometimes when I do the offices alone there's another chorus that comes 'Seek ye first the Kingdom of God', and all the answers will be given unto you – and not all the answers about maybe the material or the immediate but all God's people will be put together, so that God's will, God's mission will be realised and all people will be given hope to transcend their daily challenges. You know it could be food, it could be water in Cape Town at the moment, it could be inequality, it could be environmental issues. It's an extraordinary thing, I love that word 'transcend' that you just used. You and I both know with your huge role in the Anglican Communion, as well as in the church in Southern Africa, that we both spend so much time enveloped in issues of structures, of programmes, or budgets or strategies, and then this transcends, it takes us completely out of it. Exactly, Exactly. It takes you to another realm. Yes the budgets, the structures are important, but it's something bigger than those budgets. And each time I focus on the budgets and structure my energy just goes phwoof. [Laughter] 'To what end? To what end? Lord, this is your messy church, please help! You know it takes me outside of there, then I say 'Oh, yes, it is, it is, his Kingdom manifests itself in the small detail of the budget, the structure, but always taking me to a higher level, to say, hey, this is a God of providence because later, thy kingdom come thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven, wow.' It's an enormous responsibility, but a joy to participate. And if I go back finally to something a long time ago in your own life, say in the '80s, when the situation in southern Africa before the end of apartheid was very very different: can you give an example of where this prayer Thy Kingdom Come you felt this did, you began to see the difficulties being transcended, the liberation? At a personal level I remember at the age of 16 being chased by a van all these police in an armoured car were in uniform because we're protesting against Afrikaans as a medium of instruction. And this armoured car was really coming at me. I walked fast, it drove faster, I walked slow, it drove fast and then I ran away and I hid myself under a car where the mechanic was fixing it on a particular street. And I said to him, they want to kill me. And then he came out and they said to him, where's the terrorist? Then the mechanic came out and – I want to put what he said, he was very crude but he said, 'You guys are looking for a terrorist? They're from a young schoolboy, there are terrorists out there, why don't you get the terrorists?' I prayed and said 'Lord, I'm in your hand,' because they could have just clobbered the mechanic and me. And they left; and it was during when a number of my colleagues were killed in 1976. So I felt it at a personal level what he did, I felt his rule, I felt his hand. And generally in South Africa we prayed, we lamented, we cried, and we saw democracy come, not with too much blood, because we thought now we're going to fight for liberation, but the churches, the mosques, the schuls and us came together and we prayed. And a Christians we were in the forefront saying, Lord, let Thy Kingdom Come. They we are. Thank you. Thank you.

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Duration: 8 minutes and 37 seconds
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Language: English
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Posted by: annafjmorris on Mar 26, 2018

Thabo_1

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