Mighty Men: two deaths after thousands hear Angus Buchan's last farm sermon

2010-04-19 00:00

ORGANISERS of the Mighty Men conference yesterday reported the deaths of two men after the seventh gathering outside Greytown.

One died of a heart attack on Saturday night and another was killed in a motorbike accident on the way home from the farm.

The biker lost control while travelling on the R74 and overturned.

No further information was forthcoming about the two men while the organisers were ensuring that their next-of-kin were notified.

The police contingent at the conference said the weekend’s events went “without a hitch”.

Yesterday saw Angus Buchan preach the last sermon of the last Mighty Men conference on Shalom Farm.

The Mighty Men get-togethers have seen about 400 000 men gather at the farm to hear messages from the Bible about the role of men in society.

Bianca Ortmann, one of the event’s organisers, said that although this was the last conference to be organised by Shalom Ministries in Greytown, Buchan will continue to speak at events organised elsewhere.

Buchan said, “This is not some type of franchise we are trying to keep.”

He said those wishing to use the “Mighty Men brand” will need to obtain permission, but added that Shalom Ministries “will assist any group of men who want to have a similar get-together”.

Buchan said that 20 years ago he tried to organise a men’s breakfast at the farm to discuss similar issues. “Fourteen people came, and four of them were our own workers,” he said.

 

This year, without any formal advertising, the conference attracted more people than are expected to visit the country during the Fifa 2010 World Cup.

Buchan said he will put his “head on a block” and deem this conference the biggest religious gathering of men in the world.

He said his hope is to see men assume the roles God intended for them, both in the home and in society, by protecting and leading their families.

“It starts in the home, not in parliament,” said Buchan.

Speaking about the political tension in the country, Buchan said God is in control of the nation, “despite the spirit of negativity” that prevails.

While the conference was strictly a men-only gathering for the first two days, women were invited to attend yesterday.

Buchan addressed the women at the gathering during his sermon. “What about the ladies this morning?” he asked. “A wife has to give support; we need our women to stand together with us in our nation,” he said.

And many women agreed wholeheartedly. “Supporting your husband doesn’t mean allowing him to walk all over you. It means understanding each of your roles in the home and working together,” said one. She said mutual love and respect made the system work.

Newly-wed Marché van der Merwe said she had no problem submitting to her husband. “It is so important for our men to be leaders,” she said.

“They are the head of the home and we should work with them.”

Buchan joked that he almost “saw heaven” last year when he collapsed from exhaustion during the conference. Buchan’s son, Andy, smiled and nodded when his father was asked if it was time to take a rest.

However, Buchan’s schedule is full, with preaching appointments lined up as far afield as Ireland.

Passionate about ministering to men, Buchan reminded the gathering that “God always honours faith. Not ‘works’, but raw, undiluted faith”.

“Hopefully these men have gone away from here with a measure of faith in our nation,” he said.

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