Saturday, September 1, 2012

Equipping ourselves for spiritual warfare

Approved facilitators

UCKG bishops, pastors and their wives take part in facilitation course

The Department of Correctional Services has the responsibility of ensuring that offenders are rehabilitated so that their re-integration into society is less strenuous on them, their families and the communities they return to. To achieve this, they make courses available to offenders, which are aimed at facilitating the rehabilitation process.

One such course is CHATSEC –Combating HIV & AIDS through Spiritual and Ethical Conduct –which is aimed at not only informing offenders on the scourge of HIV/AIDS, but also teaching them to make sound, ethical decisions and consequently correcting their behaviour.

CHATSEC is one of the courses which offenders need to complete to be approved for parole. As the Church, we deem it very important to ensure that, through our Prison Ministry, we provide the spiritual assistance offenders need, and also provide the life skills necessary to facilitate their effective re integration when they are released. This is why a select group of bishops, pastors and wives enrolled in a facilitators’ course on CHATSEC recently.

The four-day course was presented by Mr Sampie van Vuuren, a seasoned facilitator who, until his retirement from the Department of Correctional Services in June this year, was the manager of Spiritual Care at the Pretoria Correctional Centre, and served in the Correctional Department for over 20 years. The course aimed at preparing the participants to facilitate the CHATSEC course to offenders on the subject of HIV/AIDS, as well as assisting them with their rehabilitation by providing them with the tools necessary for proper and sound decision-making. The participants covered the curriculum of the CHATSEC course they would be required to deliver, and
also had the skills of being effective facilitators imparted to them. The course was intensive yet lively, challenging and very informative.

Mr Van Vuuren, Pr Wessels and Bp Marcelo
“Although I have offered this course to over 2,000 participants, this is by far the most phenomenal group I have ever given the course to. They did not regard their positions of authority in the church, but put all their efforts and dedication into every task. Their participation, teamwork, work ethic and determination were amazing. It was a delight to spend time with them and I have no doubt that their work will be effective because they believe in what they do and do it with passion…an absolute blessing!” said Mr Van Vuuren.

Through the skills gained from this course, group members will be able to offer CHATSEC to offenders at Correctional Centres, and empower them to rise above their incarceration, and have a chance at a successful life beyond prison.
Contribution by Nicola

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