pfunananeSt. John’s has never been limited by Christ’s command to help our neighbor in need. Whether that neighbor is a door, a city, or a continent away, our congregation prides itself on our growing sense of mission in God’s world.

In 1997, Engela DeVilliers founded Pfunanane with a Godly vision to help families and AIDS orphans in rural Modjadjiskloof. Armed with her commitment to God and a conviction to change lives through Christian education and housing for each of her children, Pfunanane has grown from only 5 children at its inception to over 200 students in preschool through age 7 today. In addition, the school is able to provide housing and material comforts to 19 of its students. Pfunanane –which means “let’s help each other” in the XiTsonga  language –has helped many lives indeed.

St. John’s is involved in supporting Pfunanane through our sponsorship of Cricket Meyer, a missionary  and South African national who joined the staff of Pfunanane in 2011 with several years of experience with the Rafiki Foundation Children’s Villages in Uganda and Rwanda.  As a “grade R” (the U.S. equivalent of kindergarten) teacher, Cricket is in charge of loving, teaching, and ministering to her kids each day. Cricket describes her work at Pfunanane as moving her to “tears of pride and awe at all that God has done in these precious little lives.” St. John’s is proud to stand behind her in her work furthering God’s Kingdom.

To learn more about what is going on with Pfunanane, visit their website at, or email