Welcome to our
The Dutch Reformed Church in the Free State has existed for the past 150 years.
Feel free to travel with us. You will find information from the entire region here, because in every town and city there is a congregation that, in whatever way, serves the motto:
“Light in the darkness, here for God, each other and the world”.
We are the friendly Synodal Office that likes to help parishes and congregations.
We are looking forward in receiving and assisting you with anything from pension inquiries to ministerial assistance to congregations.
No inquiry is too big or too small for us. If you are in Bloemfontein come visit us, and meet our welcoming staff, we will be happy to receive you.
Synod Free StateTeam
Light in the darkness, here for God, each other and the world
- We believe that the Bible is God’s written revelation. We therefore confess that the Bible is God’s word in human language inspired by the Holy Spirit and is God’s norm for our lives. The Bible must be interpreted and explained according to its nature and intent, with the understanding that the Bible is its own interpreter and that each passage must be interpreted in its context. We believe that a living, personal relationship with God is important for understanding the intention of Scripture.
- We recognize that the post-modern zeitgeist leads to truths being relativized. We understand that this can lead to identity crises and uncertainty. That is why we declare anew our attachment to our reformed confessions: the Dutch Confession of Faith, the Heidelberg Catechism, and the Dordt Doctrine. We accept these confessions as binding because they agree with the Bible as the Word of God. The content of these confessions must live in our hearts. We ask ministers to re-introduce the content of the Confessions in a new, fresh way in congregations.
- We see our worship services as encounters with the living God where He is present through His Word and Spirit. This truth means that every meeting is characterized by a deep respect for God. We recognize that there are different spiritualities in our church which have become visible in the diversity of our worship. However, we declare that there can be no substitutes for thoroughly prepared worship services where Scripture-based preaching, the law of God and the confession find their place. We stand by the fact that there are certain cornerstones that characterize our worship services, but recognize that those cornerstones can be built on in a faithful, responsible and stylish manner with the building blocks.
- We understand our calling that we are “Light in the darkness”: “Here for God, each other and the world”. We believe that the truths of the Bible must come home in our context. That is why we accept the challenge of being sent congregations; people who are deeply impressed that we were saved by grace and now out of gratitude want to make a difference in the broken world around us. The reflection on reformed identity is a necessary and ongoing conversation. That is why we undertake to constantly pay attention to this.
The symbol used is derived from the vision “Light in the darkness”, where the torch has been used throughout the ages to bring light with it and make light in the dark. To use this old-fashioned symbol also refers to the history of the Dutch Reformed Church.
Candles are also often used as the symbol of Light for the world.
Several verses in the Bible refer to the Light, for example:
God first made light (Gen 1:3)
Light and life (Ps 36:10)
Light and truth (Ps 43:3)
Light to the world (Mat 5:14-16)
Light in the darkness (John 1:4-5)
God is light (1 John 1:5)
The colour, symbolism and variations were also created to accommodate different commissions, rings and congregations so that the different members in the Free State can be part of one body under one banner.
For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.