‘Two roads diverged in a wood, And I – I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference…’ (Robert Frost)
My name is Erroll, a proud South African, living in Port Elizabeth (Nelson Mandela Metro), happily married to Melanie, we have three married children and six grandsons (one more and we can field our own 7-a-side rugby team). I trained and worked as a chemical engineer, then attended a Theological College for four years to qualify for the pastorate, graduating with a BTh Hons. With my wife, a nursing sister by profession, we pastored five denominational churches over thirty eight years, including a ‘cell church.’ Sixteen years ago the Lord sovereignly engineered our exit from the institutional church and we started to facilitate organic house churches in our area – this has been the most satisfying, joyful time of our lives, following Jesus on ‘the road less traveled.’ To help clarify my understanding of the Church in the Bible and contemporary society, I completed a Master’s in Ecclesiology on ‘the re-incarnation of the Church in the twenty first century.’ Since then I have tried to keep up to date on all things theological and missiological. I am grateful also for the privilege of traveling quite widely and in so-doing observe the ‘Church’ first-hand on all the continents, save Antarctica. I hadn’t visited Oceania, but we were able to visit our kidz and grand-kidz in New Zealand (via Australia) for 6 weeks just before the Covid outbreak, so can cross off that part of the globe as well. Nice!
From my youth God gave me a missional heart, so today we facilitate organic house churches within our culture and cross-culturally. In ministry we reach out, in small ways, to the poor and young who make up approximately 80% of the world’s population. We network with a few other organic groups in our metro. I relate to traditional churches via friendships at two Ministers’ Fraternals in our city. I also have the privilege of walking a road with a few people in a mentoring relationship. Recently I have been asked to organize a monthly prayer gathering in our Metro, focusing on China, which I’ve been blessed to visit twice.
We are extremely grateful that our children and their families all follow Jesus as Lord – here in Port Elizabeth, Cape Town and Wellington New Zealand.
I’m essentially a ragamuffin believer apprenticed to and in love with JESUS. It’s primarily a life to be lived in him, as he lives in us. And of course all is of grace.
[As a matter of interest, in July of 2021 house church expert Wolfgang Simson indicated that there are currently at least 22.6 million house churches (house-based kingdom communities) worldwide with a total of approx. 300 million members. ‘They are, considering all internal and contextual factors, by far the most viral, adaptable and multipliable segment of Christ-followers globally. If their number continues to grow at a very realistic rate of 20% per year, they will reach a membership of more than 4 billion people within the next 30 years (Jesus tarrying) while most traditional systems are in overall decline.’ ]
I would love to contact you about something that you might be able to help us with. I am part of an organic church in Bloemfontein. My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org . I heard about you from Tobie van Der Westhuizen
Thanks for contacting me.
Good morning Errol, I came across your blog by ‘chance’ this morning and am thrilled to see the road you’re travelling … and as Liz said ‘he’s one of us’!! By the things we’re reading it’s clear that you too tired of the organised church … the difference seems that we received the left foot of fellowship rather than getting out voluntarily … with hindsight I think the Lord had opened the door but I was hesitant to step out. But the result is the same … a meaningful walk with Jesus who is our life and joy – living life on the wide plain. Many are the stories that circulated about me … I seem to be someone about whom people love to gossip … so boring to establish the facts. But God knows, and we walk on with Jesus. We’ve been in the UK for over 12 years now and have a home in Eastbourne though at present we have rented it out and are presently in India for 5 months. My email is email@example.com Would love to renew contact if you have the time … am also on Facebook if you take a peek. Love, Rob …. still “talking about things that matter with people who care”
My goodness, what a lovely surprise to hear from you guyz! Thanks for the little window on your life to bring us up to speed. I knew you had left for the UK at some stage, that’s about all until now. While the Lord ‘engineered our exit’ in the ultimate sense, we had an unnecessarily painful parting with our last congregation in terms of hurts suffered by ourselves, our children and most of the congregation who were supportive of us.
Fortunately I never got to hear the gossip about yourself, Rob – all I know is that our enemy loves to tear at Christ’s body like a wolf tears at flesh. I’m so glad that God has led you and your family on from that point!
Thanks for your email, I’ll write you some time. Unfortunately I am not on Facebook. My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
Love to you both,
Erroll and Melanie.
Hi, Erroll! It’s Becky…you may remember me from the blog I once wrote at, A New & Living Way, and a couple others. I have not been much on reading (or writing) online, but I do hope you and yours are doing well in His care.
I thought I had your email, alas I do not. Looking to communicate with your privately about a matter God has placed on my heart that you may be able to help me with. If you feel led to, I would greatly appreciate it if you would email me through the ‘contact’ page of Occupied With Christ, whenever and if ever you have the time. Thank you kindly.
Happy to return the favour; I appreciate your perspective – as we are living as far apart on this little spaceship Earth. Grace to you under the abiding light of our Lord.
I love the sound of this. Do you have any groups meeting in summerstrand or south end? How can I join a group for lockdown.
We used to have a group in Summerstrand, Desire. We still have an elderly couple traveling from there. Sadly, under lockdown we can’t physically meet even when under 20 in number (we believe ‘smaller’ is often better than ‘bigger’) – for the time being, anyway. If you can, by private email rather than my blog site, send me a brief introduction to yourself and your circumstances, we can take it from there. Or, if you send me your private phone number on private email, we can chat on whatsap and see how the Lord leads…
Thanks for inquiring!
Loving your blog.
Note, the quote of “Two roads . . .” is from The Road Not Taken, by one of my favorite American poets, Robert Frost.
Some of your reads are a little long, but usually worth the effort. However, if you can abbreviate your messages, or break them up into “series” (e.g. “Prepare for God’s Glorious Arrival” split could have been 3 or 4).\, I suspect you will get more traffic.
But in any case, we can always discuss this in the New Jerusalem 😇, if it really matters. See you there, my brother.
Thanks my brother. Will see what I can do!
Good to meet you, Erroll! P.S. The “two roads” quote is actually from a poem by Robert Frost. M. Scott Peck used it for the title of his well known book.
You’re the second person to correct the author of ‘two roads,’ about time I edited it! Very good to meet you also. The joy of the Lord to you!
Thank you, you too!
And now my ancient computer refuses to edit my ‘About.’ Will have to get the doctor in…
New computer, edited!
Thank you for your insightfull posts
My goodness, Marietjie, SO good to hear from you! I trust you and Hein and your son are keeping well. You will never know how much those Free State visits meant to me and Melanie, our son Justin, and those of our house church members able to attend from time to time. Thanks for your and Hein’s kind hospitality, and regards to you all.