The following is a letter to Living Hope's American ministry partners from Chairman John Thomas:
I trust you all have had a wonderful Christmas and that 2011 will be a year of God’s grace to you and that you will know Him pouring out His Spirit over you in amazing ways.
Thank-you for your ongoing love and support. You have no idea how much you mean to us. We don’t share our gratefulness to you often enough, but we honestly could not continue the work in South Africa without you. There is no doubt in my mind that the USA churches, teams, volunteers and giving have become a critical cornerstone of what the Lord is doing in Cape Town. The month of December was a great one in terms of your giving to Living Hope and we are humbled by your generosity. Thank-you to each one and to each church who gave sacrificially to us.
We have traditionally held our annual Partners Conference at the beginning of March each year. This year we had planned to do the same, but we have decided to postpone it for a while. Let me share why we are postponing it. As most of you know that we have been working on a CD of the Masi Choir and a number of U.S.-based artists. Michael W. Smith, Jars of Clay and Casting Crowns have each recorded a unique track of music on this CD, which is absolutely amazing. The guys at Brentwood Baptist Church have worked so hard on getting this CD together and it is finally produced and ready for printing. We are understandably thrilled that this project is nearing completion – it is a dream coming true. We had planned to have a launch concert of the CD as the opening night of our Partners Conference this year on February 28. We want each of you and your churches to be able to participate in this wonderful celebration with us. A lot of back ground work has gone into getting the U.S.-based artists to host this concert. Unfortunately, despite much effort to hold the concert on the 28th of February, it has become clear that it is not going to happen.
We obviously want you to participate in this concert and launch. Not only was this going to be the CD launch, but also a book launch. Allen Allnoch, a volunteer from Low Country Community Church, has been working tirelessly on a coffee-table story book on Living Hope. (Like the CD, you are going to love this book). We do not feel that we can ask you to go to all the expense of coming to Nashville twice this year for Living Hope – once for the Partners Conference and then again for the Concert, CD and book launch. We really want this event to be a fantastic time when all our Partners and friends of Living Hope are present. We therefore have decided to put the Partners conference on hold until we have clarity on the concert and CD launch date. I hope the concert will be somewhere between May and September this year. It is my personal longing that every one of you will be there with a whole lot of your church if at all possible. The two days following the concert will then be our Partners Conference. I know that at this stage I am not giving you dates to keep free, but as soon as we have clarity on possible dates, we will let you know. I really trust that this time of celebration and partnership will be one of the greatest held in the history of Living Hope USA. Do start saving in order to be with us for our Concert, CD and book launch and, of course, the Partners Conference.
Your friend and grateful partner in Christ
John V. Thomas
Chairperson, Living Hope