South Africa: A Land of Opportunity

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SA FlagThere is more to South Africa than gold and diamond mines. More than just Springbok rugby. More than its historical figures like Jan Smuts, Cecil John Rhodes, Gandhi, and Nelson Mandela. More even than the Kruger National Park and Africa’s Big 5 – the lion, the elephant, the buffalo, the leopard and the rhino.

With a land area of 1,221,037 km2 (471,445 mi2), South Africa is the world’s 24th largest country and the southernmost nation of Africa. Its population is around 55 million, divided between black, white, coloured and Asian. Statistically, it is 79% Christian.

As a ministry, Calvary Chapel has been active in South Africa since the late 1990’s. Presently there are seven active fellowships; 5 in the Western Cape, 1 in Johannesburg, and 1 in KwaZulu-Natal. The local pastors are trusting God to multiply these works and to establish many more ministries in South Africa. The harvest is so plentiful in this nation – but the labourers are few! Please pray for a move of God in South Africa and that many new Calvary Chapels will spring up in the years to come!

South African cities at a glanceSouth Africa

There are a number of cities in South Africa that do not currently have active Calvary Chapel fellowships and the local body is trusting the Lord to raise up and send workers into these fields:


DurbanDurban (population 3,442,361)

Situated on the East coast of South Africa in the KwaZulu-Natal province, Durban is the third largest city in South Africa and is famous for being the busiest port on South Africa. Durban is known for its good climate and booming tourism industry with pristine beaches and warm weather, with “The Golden Mile” beachfront being a popular destination for locals and tourists alike.


Bloemfontein (population 747,431)

The judicial capital of South Africa and the capital of the Free State province, Bloemfontein is located in the centre of the country. Despite being situated on dry grassland, Bloemfontein, which means “Fountain of Flowers” in Afrikaans, is affectionately dubbed “The City of Roses.” Located just under 400 km (248 mi) from Johannesburg and nestled between Kimberley and the nation of Lesotho, it is well positioned for easy travel around the country.


PretoriaPretoria (population 2,921,488)

Known as “Jacaranda City” due to the abundance of the purple-blossomed Jacaranda trees that cover the landscape, Pretoria (or Tshwane as it is also known as) is the administrative capital of South Africa. Situated just 70 km (43 mi) from Johannesburg, Pretoria is home to the Union Buildings which is the seat of the South African Parliament, and the site of Mandela’s inauguration.


George (population 193,672)

Situated on the Garden Route, between Port Elizabeth and Cape Town, George is known as the hub of the Southern Cape region. George was established in the 18th century when there was a growing need of timber. The area is known for its incomparable beauty and is a popular tourist destination. George and the surrounding areas, such as Wilderness and Knysna, are rich in cultural heritage.


Port ElizabethPort Elizabeth (population 1,152,115)

Port Elizabeth,  on the East coast of South Africa, is known as “the friendly city”. Situated along the Garden Route, 770 km (478 mi) from Cape Town, it is one of the largest cities in the Eastern Cape. It is a major port and a popular tourist attraction for both local and international visitors, boasting great beaches, and is home to the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University.


Nelspruit (population 588,794)

Situated on the Crocodile River, Nelspruit is the capital of the Mpumalanga province. Nelspruit is only 110 km (68 mi) from Mozambique and 330 km (205 mi) from Johannesburg in the top corner of the country.  Nelspruit is a stopover point for tourists who are traveling to the Kruger National Park as well as Mozambique and is the main trading centre for the surrounding fruit growing area of Mpumalanga.


East LondonEast London (population 755,200)

In the heart of the Eastern Cape province, East London lies between the Buffalo and Nahoon rivers and is home to South Africa’s only river port. With its long sandy beaches and reefs it is a surfer’s paradise. It is also a gateway into traditional Xhosa homelands  with this region being the birthplace of a host of South African leaders such as Nelson Mandela and Thabo Mbeki.


Rustenburg (population 549,575)

Rustenburg is home to the two largest platinum mines in the world and the largest platinum refinery which processes about 70% of the world’s platinum. Located in the North West province near Gauteng, Rustenberg is only 140 km (86 mi) from Johannesburg. Rich in Afrikaans history, Rustenburg was established in 1851 and is now reported to be the fastest growing city in South Africa.


Kimberley (population 248,041)

As the capital of the Northern Cape, Kimberley is the largest city in the province. With a rich history, it is best known for its once thriving diamond mining industry which makes the Great Hole of Kimberley the tourist attraction it is today. The city was also the stage for the Siege of Kimberley which took place during the Second Boer War. Kimberley is a major tourist destination in South Africa.


Polokwane (population 628,999)

Meaning “Place of Safety” in the Northern Sesotho language, Polokwane is the capital of the Limpopo province, the northernmost province of South Africa. Lying halfway between Johannesburg  and the Zimbabwe border, and 330 km (205 mi) from the Botswana border, Polokwane connects these African nations with the major South African cities.

The following seven ministries have been faithfully established by the Lord in the Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng provinces which are led by both local South African pastors as well as pastors that the Lord has sent from outside of the borders. Please pray for these cities and churches that minister in them as they serve the people of South Africa:


The City of Cape Town, also known as ‘The Mother City’ is the third most populated area in South Africa with approximately 3.7 million people. It is also one of the most multicultural cities in the world. The city is the prime and capital city of the Western Cape Province. Cape Town is also home to Table Mountain, one of its major tourist attractions. It is the southern most city on the African continent. Calvary Chapel Cape Town is led by Pastor Demitri Nikiforos. Find out more about Calvary Chapel Community Church Cape Town.Cape Town
Paarl is a small town located in the Western Cape with over 190 000 inhabitants. It is the third oldest town and European settlement in South Africa and the largest town in the Cape Winelands. It is situated about 60 km (37 mi) northeast of Cape Town and just a stones throw away from Wellington where Andrew Murray ministered at the turn of the 20th century. Calvary Chapel Paarl is led by Pastor Bryce Turi. Find out more about Calvary Chapel Paarl.


Johannesburg, also known as Joburg, is the largest city in South Africa with a population of around 4.4 million people. It is the provincial capital of Gauteng, which is the wealthiest province in South Africa. The city is the world’s largest city not situated on a river, lake, or coastline. It was named and established in 1886 following the discovery of gold on what had been a farm and is thought to be the modern day El Dorado due to the large gold deposit found along the Witwatersrand. Calvary Chapel Johannesburg is led by Pastor Chad Naakteboren. Find out more about Calvary Chapel Johannesburg Community Church.Johannesburg
Tableview is not defined as a city but a suburb of Cape Town found on the West Coast. It is named after its view of Table Mountain. It has expanded rapidly since the 1970s. The Calvary Chapel Tableview church is led by Pastor Bob Scott. Find out more about Calvary Chapel Tableview.


Somerset West is a town situated at the foot of the Helderberg (meaning ‘clear mountain’). The town is approximately 50 km (30 mi) east of Cape Town central city area and is surrounded by orchards, farmlands and vineyards. Somerset West was established in 1822. Calvary Chapel Somerset West is led by Pastor DeBeer. Find out more about Calvary Chapel Somerset West.Somerset West
Kommetjie (pronounced cawma-key) in Afrikaans means ‘small basin’, it is a small town near Cape Town. It has approximately 3000 residents enjoying its rural atmosphere. The area is a popular spot for surfing due to powerful waves form the Atlantic Ocean. Beachside Church Kommetjie is led by Kirk Kneezle and his wife Karen. Find out more about Beachside Church Kommetjie


Simon’s Town is the historic home to the South African Navy located near Cape Point, the South Western most tip of Africa, and a popular holiday destination for both local and international visitors. The town itself is over 200 years old and steeped in naval history and was named after Simon van der Stel, a govenor of the Cape Colony. It is here that Redemption Church South Peninsula finds its home. Redemption Church is led by Julian Duguid and his wife Monica. Find out more about Redemption Church South Peninsula.


Hillcrest is a fast growing suburbs on the outskirts of Durban in KwaZulu-Natal. Named after the fact that it is rise between Durban and Pietermaritzburg, Hillcrest is located a mere 30 km (18 mi) from Durban itself. Calvary Chapel Hillcrest is led by Pastor Doug Search and his wife Christine. You can contact Calvary Chapel Hillcrest directly for more information.


The Lord has been using South Africa as a gateway into the rest of this beautiful continent, please continue to pray that God would multiply these ministries and raise up men and women from within to heed the call to go out into the surrounding nations to proclaim the gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, to disciple believers and to equip them for the ministry.