Rina Geldenhuys

Open Letter to Domino Servite School

Open letter to Domino Servite School - my school for thirteen years.

As a child who has spent her whole school career at Domino Servite School, I would like to relate some of my experiences. Who else can give better testimony to what the school is really like than a 19-year-old girl who has just completed matric in it? I want to draw on my own store of fresh memories. Allow me to share my story.

I have many joyful memories of a lovely childhood. Contrary to so-called popular belief, my life has not been one filled with fear, oppression or abuse. Rather, I have witnessed first-hand how many hopeless young people suffering from depression, addiction and bondage have been delivered through the message that this gospel brings - there is hope for anyone and that hope starts with Christ. I am therefore eternally grateful and would do right to express this gratitude.

Both at home and at school, I was taught that all of us are created in God's image and are precious in His sight, regardless of our age, our skin-colour, our language, our gender and our culture. We learned to embrace one another's differences and to collaborate as a team. Oh how often I reminisce nostalgically over the fun times we had at sport, our antics in the classroom and the various outings.

No textbook could have taught me to love children of other races, it came through the lives that I experienced being lived before me, I do not know of another life! I shared my life with my classmates: together we sweated, together we got into trouble, together we laughed and together we grew up.

What I really love about my school is the "missionary" side to it. We would often skip class to sing for guests, serve at various events such as during the Minister' Conference and were always a part of what was happening in God's work. We were just kids but the school trusted us to serve these adults and thus showed us that our age or our skills are not a limit to what God can do through us. Getting out the classroom was always a welcome break! It gave me a deep love and appreciation for a missionary's life and for God's work - no good deed is too small for His work.

I am so grateful to Reverend Stegen for the courage he had in starting a Mission school. How often the school has often been a subject of derision and accusation. I praise the Lord for His almighty hand of grace and protection all these years, I pray He would continue to strengthen and lead this great work in the way that only He can. Reverend Stegen, we honour you, you did the right thing by starting this school. I doubt I would have been able to write this letter otherwise!

My final words are only in gratitude to those who guided me and brought me up in their own way, in the way that they knew best. To my teachers, you were more than teachers, you were mothers and fathers and dare I even say, you were friends. May your legacy of the highest moral standards and academics continue from strength to strength in the years that still lie ahead as you strain towards an eternal reward that cannot be taken away from you no matter what might be said. South Africa desperately needs more schools with backbones that stand for truth and that make men and women out of any child.

Forever grateful,
Rina Geldenhuys

PS: Attached is a school project I did in Grade 9 on the role of the Mission and the school during the time of Apartheid to further share my opinion.


Rina Geldenhuys Grade 9 Project