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, 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.
FELLOWSHIP GROUPS & CHURCH PLANTS
Fellowship groups are the foundation for a church plant and at the moment we have several fellowship groups meeting weekly in areas where we hope to establish a fully-fledged congregation. Some already meet on Sundays for celebration services, while others meet in small groups during the week. You’re very welcome to join! Send us an email if you’d like more info about existing or new fellowship groups.
Video conferencing infrastructure allows us to stream our church services to just about anywhere in the world. We’re currently streaming services to several locations in South Africa, other parts of Africa and abroad, where groups of people get together in homes and other venues. If you know of a group that would like to be part of our weekly services, please let us know.
We’re proud to be associated with some dynamic partner churches. Through the Shofar Church Network we help one another fulfill our mandates in our respective communities. Together we can do it better and faster. Please visit these churches in your area! You’re welcome to email us if you’d like more info about joining the Shofar Church Network.
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. See our leadership structure in more detail.
Our top leadership structures consist of leadership teams that are accountable to one another and lead as a group headed by a chairman or group leader. The church is led internationally by the international apostolic team chaired by our international leader – Pastor Heinrich Titus. The national churches are led by national apostolic teams chaired by national leaders. Pastor Heinrich Titus is our South African national leader and Pastor Henry Mkhomanya is our national leader of the church in Malawi. Once there are more congregations in Namibia, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom, apostolic teams will be appointed for those nations.
Under the national apostolic leadership teams, we have regional leaders, each of whom pastors a congregation, as well as providing on-the-ground leadership for the other congregations in their geographical region. Supporting our regional leaders we have elders, who help make decisions and provide accountability. Each region has a group of elders, who are members of the local congregations that make up the region.
Each congregation has a pastor (sometimes more than one), supported by a group of deacons. The pastors are usually full-time, with the exception of the early stages of some church plants, while the deacons are men and women who support the pastor in practical ministry. Small groups provide further leadership structure within each congregation, with small group leaders under the guidance of zone leaders, who in turn are looked after by district leaders – all members of the church who have taken up the call to disciple others. Take a look at the congregation info if you’d like to find out more about your local church.
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.
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 Fred May and Anton Myburgh both fulfilling leadership roles on the African Cabinet.
The vision of Empowered21
That every person on Earth would have an authentic encounter with Jesus Christ through the Power and Presence of the Holy Spirit by Pentecost 2033
The mission of Empowered21
To Unite the Global Spirit-filled movement together intergenerationally for the purpose of seeking a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the 21st Century
To Focus the energy and resources of the Spirit-empowered global church on the harvest and challenges before us
To Provide a platform for addressing the crucial issues facing the 21st Century Spirit-empowered church
To Discover contemporary methods, vocabulary, spiritual grace and relational favor needed for engaging every generation in Spirit-empowered living
To Witness greater convergence and collaboration of Spirit-empowered ministries around the World