The Need

Feature, Charl van Wyk, South AfricaIt's well-known among Christian workers in Africa that the church is "an inch deep and a mile wide."

Without access to books and written materials, many believers don't even own their own Bible!

And their pastor might not, either.

In fact, though incredibly sincere, he may have only been saved recently himself!

Without discipleship or examples of how a life is lived in light of God's Word and truth, it isn't unheard of for someone to become saved and simply continue old religious customs and ways of life while changing the name of the deity to "Jesus."

Description

Charl van Wyk is a Christian missionary, author and activist in Africa.

His belief in his Christian duty to protect the innocent, vulnerable and oppressed led him to single-handedly return fire in the midst of a terrorist attack, saving many lives!

The story of how God led Charl to forgive and pursue reconciliation with his attackers is captured in his best-selling book, Shooting Back – The Right and Duty of Self-defense.

Now he is engaged in a new war - a battle to establish kingdom-focused covenant communities in Southern Africa.

His pro-active stance on educating the Church and renewing minds with a Biblical worldview drives him to see communities changed through the Gospel, discipleship and community development.

Charl and his team are:

Charl is praying and working toward reformation - building a generation of young, Christ centered, Gospel driven servant leaders to take action in a broken world.

Stone Hill

Stone Hill is a squatter camp outside of Cape Town, South Africa. The youth of Stone Hill are incredibly hardened by the depravity of their culture.

Alcohol, drugs, theft, stabbings and rape are common occurrences in their everyday lives.

Stone Hill, South Africa, Charl van Wyk, Poverty

Stone Hill settlement, outside Cape Town, South Africa.

Stone Hill, South Africa, Charl van Wyk, Sports, Poverty

Run down shacks like this one are the only thing that stands between most Stone Hill families and the damp, cold South African winter. 

Most girls are encouraged by their mother to have sex before marriage and give birth, thus proving their fertility.

Homes are filled with illegitimate children who have no idea who their father is. If there is a man in the home, he is probably their mother’s boyfriend.

One young man was set on fire in a revenge attack and another was stabbed to death over a cigarette. 

The van Wyk family is part of a group of believers who spearhead discipleship opportunities for the youth of Stone Hill using activities like wrestling, soccer, handball and crafts as catalysts to build relationships with the youth.

Stone Hill, South Africa, Charl van Wyk, youth

Stone Hill girls with their crafts.

Stone Hill, South Africa, Charl van Wyk, Sports

The Stone Hill wrestling team surprised everyone by winning the championship!Stone Hill, South Africa, Charl van Wyk

Stone Hill youth connect with believers through these activities.

Through these activities, the youth are learning that they have value. They are discovering how a trustworthy, godly adult lives. They experience the novelty of safe relationships. They encounter Jesus through His people.

Stone Hill, South Africa, Charl van Wyk

New shacks built by believers are a big upgrade for many Stone Hill families.

 

Enjoy this 3 minute video of Charl telling the story of Stone Hill.

The results of the ministry in Stone Hill are staggering. Stone Hill has transformed into a community that is known as a "Christian" community!

Stone Hill, South Africa, Charl van Wyk, Mark Parris

ITMI's Charl van Wyk and Mark Parris study the Bible with youth from Stone Hill!

Empowering and Equipping Pastors

Charl makes frequent trips to Zambia and the DRC Congo, where he encourages the local believers - who many times don't have contact with the outside world due to the estrangement that comes with a war-torn infrastructure.

These trips are also for discipling local pastors and church leaders, as well as preaching, teaching and delivering Bibles and discipleship materials.

One especially effective delivery item has been bicycles for local pastors and evangelists, enabling them to bike to an unreached village nearby and share the gospel with them. This is made possible through Charl's Bibles and Bikes Fund.

bicycle

Charl van Wyk

Bicycles are a cost-effective way to reach many with the gospel!

Charl van Wyk, Bicycles, Pastors, Africa

Charl van Wyk with African pastors and their new bikes!

Reaching and Discipling Youth in Zimbabwe

Charl has partnered with a dedicated believer in Zimbabwe, Cozmore, to reach youth in Zimbabwe. Together, they offered a Gospel camp to some youth in a Zimbabwe village. 

Charl and Cozmore have continued relationships with the boys . 

They helped a few launch a chicken farming business, helped one young man with a formidable health obstacle and have also began discipling the parents of the youth. 

Charl van Wyk, Zimbabwe

Charl with youth from the village and Zimbabwe at the Gospel camp.

 

History

In 1993, Charl was worshipping with his church on a Sunday when terrorists entered the building and opened gunfire on the congregation. This incident later became known as the St. James Massacre.

Charl used his firearm to return fire, valiantly protecting those around him. Surprised by someone "Shooting Back" the attack was diffused quickly and many lives were saved.

Charl received a citation from General Acker of the South African Police for his courage under fire.

Charl's courage and subsequent graciousness toward his attackers has yielded him several opportunities to witness to his attackers - he even got to share God's good news about forgiveness at one of their conventions!

Several of the leaders of this terrorist group received Christ as a result of their relationship with Charl. 

Charl van Wyk, forgiveness, shooting back

Charl explains and demonstrates God's forgiveness at a conference full of terrorists who attacked his church.

Charl van Wyk, forgiveness, shooting back

Charl shares Jesus with the terrorists who once attacked his church.

Charl van Wyk, forgiveness, shooting back

Charl offering forgiveness and a Bible to one of the men who attacked his church.

Goals

  • Help the church in the Dominican Republic of Congo to be prepared to take up the challenge of a new political dispensation.
  • Help Zambian believers work to see their country remain constitutionally a Christian nation, despite much attack.
  • Lead South African Christians in influencing South African government policy until it reflects Biblical values.

Needs

  • Funds to purchase bicycles for the church pastors in Democratic Republic of Congo.
  • Funds to expand the outreaches in Stone Hill, South Africa.
  • Personal support for Charl and his family.

Who’s Involved

  • ITMI to provide guidance and US exposure.
  • WorldNetDaily, publisher of Charl’s book, Shooting Back.

Latest News

How Did You Get These Young Men to be Obedient and Disciplined?

Charl van Wyk, Zimbabwe

You may be really blessed to have a Christian community around you. A community of sisters and brothers in Christ where you are loved, cherished and supported. In Africa, the opportunity to experience the building of a world around the Gospel—to just taste what living a Gospel life is like—is for the most part, just a distant and seemingly unattainable dream. A dream that few can even fathom.

A Simple and Cost-effective Solution to a Complex Problem

South Africa, Charl van Wyk, Stone Hill, Mark Parris

Yonela pressed her fingertips into the corners of her eyes. She ran them across her dark eyebrows and shook her head in fatigue and frustration. From the front of the South African high school classroom, her algebra teacher was explaining a complicated concept in Afrikaans, Yonela’s third language. At home, Yonela speaks Xhosa and English.  Yonela was desperately trying…

Thank You for My Leg

Mpumelelo, Charl van Wyk, Zambia

“Uncle, thank you for my leg.” This is how Mpumelelo thanked me in his broken English. In some African cultures the elderly and infirm, perceived as being worthless to the tribe will be left behind as the nomadic tribe moves on – and they will die of hunger or be eaten by wild animals. But that’s not where this story ends.

4 Things You Should Know About Life in Remote Villages

Africa, Villages

“I used to think, ‘All for one and one for all,’ is what village life is all about, right? That the villages are populated by the “noble savage” and lead a connected, unified community life,” says ITMI’s Timothy Keller. But unfortunately, this version of village life may be popular in Hollywood and children’s tales, its simply not what Timothy has found after over a decade of ministry in African villages. “Rural Africa is

Helping a Seventeen Year-old Crocodile Attack Victim

Zimbabwe, Charl van Wyk

One young man arrived on crutches from an injury he suffered in a crocodile attack. Thankfully, he wasn’t alone during the attack. In a vicious fight his friends clung to his upper body and arms while the croc clutched his foot before—praise the Lord—the friends finally won out. Medical staff managed to save his foot and toes.

Dear Team: “Not on Our Watch!”

mpumelelo, zimbabwe, charl van wyk

I want to be one of these boys.  I don’t know their names, but I know their actions. They are probably like most any boy who lives in Zimbabwe today.  Loves to play football (soccer), gets into mischief, wishes for a chance to go to school, and goes to bed hungry way more than they want and way more than we experience here in the States. I still want to be one of them. 

Dear Team: Dream Big, Ask Boldly

Charl van Wyk, Steve Evers,

This might be a small thing, but it tickled me. I should have known better when ITMI’s Charl van Wyk asked me how many thumb drives we had. Charl doesn’t look at things like most people. He…

July 2017 Newsbites – Piotr Gets Some Unexpected News, Charl Has an Exciting Announcement and Paul and Molly Celebrate Summer Outreaches!

News bites

Piotr gets some unexpected news, Charl has an exciting announcement, Paul and Molly celebrate summer outreaches, K5N is sending a team to Bulgaria this month, and now’s the time to schedule a meet-up with Timothy Keller for this fall!

Three Unlikely Entrepreneurs Launch a New Venture

Charl van Wyk, Zimbabwe

Three young men from Gwayi River, Zimbabwe are launching an exciting new venture, even though the odds have been stacked against all of them their whole lives. What is this exciting new venture? A one-of-a-kind tech solution? A breakthrough discovery? A much-needed service no one has thought of?It’s none of those.

There are No Hotels in the Jungle

charl van wyk, south africa

Missionary work is not a life of ease. There aren’t too many Marriott Hotels (or hotels of any kind) in the jungle.

ITMI’s Charl van Wyk shares a little about the discipleship projects he is involved with.

An Important Message and a Limited Time Offer!

Stone Hill, South Africa

If stewardship is important to you, if you’d like maximize your impact, if you like tax deductions – and making a real difference at the same time, if the plight of the poor and marginalized are on your heart but you don’t know what to do about it; then this is the opportunity you’ve been looking for!

A Not-So-Typical Day in the Pasture

Onseepkans, South Africa

Gerhard le Roux and four of his kids took their sheep to pasture in the typical way, but what happened next was anything but typical.

Yanked from a Crocodile’s Jaws

Charl van Wyk

One young man arrived on crutches from an injury he suffered in a crocodile attack. Thankfully, he wasn’t alone during the attack.In a vicious fight his friends clung to his upper body and arms while the croc clutched his foot before the friends finally won out. Medical staff managed to save his foot and toes.

Why Nationals?

nationals

“Why do the men sit on one side and the women on the other?”

Years ago, ITMI’s founder, Bill Bathman and his travel companion, Don Christiansen were in a Romanian church. This particular group of believers held long-standing traditions that had gotten them through the persecution of the Communism and the scarcity of the aftermath that followed.

But after the Iron Curtain came down, Don wondered why they sat the way they did. Was it to keep everyone from being distracted? Was it their sense of modesty and propriety?

The Story of Stone Hill’s Soldiers for Christ

Stone Hill, South Africa

Several years ago, Stone Hill was a forgotten squatters’ camp outside Durbanville, South Africa. But now…

From the Archives: Adventures in Africa – Learning in the Lion’s Den

Charl van Wyk, South Africa

This article was originally published in the March 2002 edition of ITMI Monthly. It was re-printed in the November 2016 edition as part of a “From the Archives” series commemorating ITMI’s 35th Anniversary. South Africa Some background: on July 25, 1993, twenty minutes after the Sunday evening service had begun at St. James Church in Cape Town, […]

Charl’s New Opportunity

Charl van Wyk, Zimbabwe

Which country holds the historical record for the most zeros on a printed note? Hint: the title photo is a well-known feature on the border of this country. The answer is…

7 Benefits You Helped Provide for Young Village Boys in Zimbabwe (Video)

Charl van Wyk, Zimbabwe

ITMI partner, Charl van Wyk, his friend and ministry partner, Cozmore, and the other believers ministering in Stone Hill, an impoverished squatters’ camp outside Cape Town, South Africa, arranged for 20 young boys from the settlement to go to a camp last summer. Their response to the camp was…

Why the Completion of the Stone Hill Ministry Facility Means So Much (Video)

Video, Stone Hill, South Africa, Charl van Wyk

It’s exhilarating to see something great accomplished. Especially when that something is a big endeavor, the kind only God can pull off. The kind that truly makes the world a better place. And that’s what makes today’s news such cause for celebration.

Driving to Small Villages in Zambia

Charl van Wyk, Zambia

Charl and Cozmore brave the roads in a small car to a tiny village in Zambia. Read their story!