Bitesize Biography - FESTO KIVENGERE
Author: Frank Retief
‘Bishop Frank Retief has done the Christian world a signal favour in bringing forth this challenging, readable and fascinating biography of Bishop Festo Kivengere, one of the greatest African Christian leaders and evangelists of the twentieth century. Here, in brief compass, is an important legacy statement not only for all interested in Christian mission in Africa but also for all Anglicans everywhere, as well as for friends and supporters of African Enterprise. Bishop Festo and I co-led this work for many years and perhaps it is significant that this biography is appearing in 2012, the Jubilee Year & fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the work in which he served with such distinction for so long. Read! Enjoy! And let Festo put a bomb under your seat!’
Michael Cassidy, African Enterprise
‘This is biography at its very best and provides compelling reading from beginning to end. ‘It begins with Festo as a herdsman in a remote African kraal and concludes with him as the best-known African evangelist of his day. Through his powerful preaching a major advance was made in several African countries. The organising genius of Michael Cassidy is woven into the story. ‘We read of the breathtaking courage of Festo who, face to face with Idi Amin, pleaded for the lives of innocent souls when that ruthless dictator went on the rampage. This was a saga of grim brutality. It is amazing that Festo survived. ‘There are perceptive insights into the Rwandan revival which spread to surrounding nations. Festo’s own conversion is well told and illustrates the power of revival. Like Jonathan Edwards before him, Frank Retief reminds us that even though spiritual awakenings are sent from heaven they are a mixed blessing. There are many shallow-ground hearers; and fanatics also have to be contended with who divide rather than bear the fruit of humility and meekness. ‘This book has the added value of providing a much needed balanced overall perspective and understanding of twentieth-century evangelical Christianity in the heart of the African Continent.’
Erroll Hulse, editor Reformation Today
Frank Retief was born in Cape Town in 1942. He received Christ as a teenager and went on to study theology and embark on a life-long career of full-time gospel work. He became a minister in the Church of England in South Africa (CESA), and planted and pastored St James Church, Kenilworth, for many years. Frank was consecrated an Area Bishop for the denomination in 1985. In 1999 he was nominated as Presiding Bishop and served the denomination in this capacity until his retirement in 2010.