Church, ex-cons unite

2018-07-17 06:00
Members of “Taakmag van God” march with the community members of Kensington and Factreton, calling for peace.PHOTO: angelo kalmeyer

Members of “Taakmag van God” march with the community members of Kensington and Factreton, calling for peace.PHOTO: angelo kalmeyer

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A local church is teaming up with ex-convicts to stop gang-related shootings in Kensington and Factreton.

A group of reformed offenders and recovering drug addicts from the group “Taakmag van God” partnered with Kensington Worship Centre and held prayer and inspirational services to spread a message of peace last week.

Dressed in orange prison-like gear, made and printed by a private business (with the knowledge of the Department of Correctional Services) and tied up in chains, the former inmates marched alongside pastors and other congregants through the local streets. Scores of local residents joined the march.

“Taakmag van God” comprises various personalities, from pastors and evangelists to ex-prisoners and recovering drug addicts. They hail from various corners of Cape Town, including Delft, Hanover Park, Manenberg, Elsies River, Bonteheuwel, Kensington and Bishop Lavis.

Evangelist and group member, Godfrey Bruintjies, explains that the group travels around to areas where crime and gang violence are rife. They get a “call out” to a particular area and they respond.

Brother Edward Diedericks of the Kensington Worship Centre asked them to visit Kensington recently because of ongoing shootings in the area, and they obliged.

“I asked them to come because of the shootings,” Diedericks confirms.

The area has been hit by numerous shootings in recent weeks and the incidence has not dissipated, according to some locals. In fact, a shooting was reportedly heard during the services but no-one was injured.

Police were still investigating a murder case after a 37-year-old man was killed in a suspected gang-related shooting in Factreton on Friday 8 June. The incident took place in Glider Crescent at about 06:00.

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