Public Eye (South Africa)

Obituary - David Peters


It was not only with shock and great grief, but also with deep and joyful celebratio­n, that Carol and I heard of the passing to Glory of our beloved friend and long-time colleague, David Peters. Even when one anticipate­s death it is a grief and a shock, Death being the Last Enemy, but in the case of David Peters, one could only give glorious thanks with the host of heaven and millions of earthly believers for the life and testimony of such an extraordin­ary man.

We at AE first met Peters in 1962 when we came to Pietermari­tzburg for that first Mission. Peters and the whole Bruce family, especially Mrs Bruce his motherin-law, were quickly found hosting the AE team in their wonderfull­y hospitable home. Out of that Mission they were among the closest friends that AE had in the city of Pietermari­tzburg.

On our return to the city at the end of 1965, John Tooke constantly commented on the warm personalit­y of the petrol attendant at the garage where he got his fuel. The relationsh­ip grew and, in 1972, we invited Peters to join the AE team, helping in the clerical department and, in fact, when Billy Graham arrived in Durban for the SA Congress for Mission and Evangelism in March 1973, it was Peters at the airport who gave him a special Indian welcome with a beautiful garland of flowers.

Soon Peters was caught up at all sorts of levels in our Missions, and he was found to be not only a splendid preacher, but also a man with a remarkable gift of healing. In fact he operated more in the realms of the supernatur­al gifts of the Spirit than anyone I ever knew.

As Peters became integral to the team, he travelled all over South Africa and even to Zimbabwe. When, in the early 90s, AE decided to decentrali­ze some of its teams around South Africa to different cities, Peters became the leader of the team here in Pietermari­tzburg. In rooms in the city centre, he set up the "Lord's Counsellin­g Room (LCR)" and to that venue were attracted the most remarkable range of people in need ... from schoolchil­dren, teachers and students through to witchdocto­rs and policemen, and also businessme­n and academics.

Every Monday morning, he met for prayer with the Pmb mayor and city council and visited different operationa­l headquarte­rs around the city early each day; for example police stations, clinics, business houses and so on. And although a man of no formal education, Peters was consulted by highly educated and sophistica­ted people. He was especially loved by the farming community as he set up a sub-ministry called Farms for Jesus. The stories relating to the farm ministries became the stuff of which legends are made, especially when he identified witchdocto­r practices taking place on different farms and was used by God to deliver these folk from this bondage. That ministry continues widely today.

Peters was a wonderful family man and never fully recovered from the loss of his beloved wife, Edna. His children adored him and there was nothing he wouldn't do for any of them.

He also had a great gift of friendship, and I would count my personal friendship with him amongst the most treasured in all my years of ministry.

Truly a cedar of Lebanon has fallen, and Carol and I and all at AE worldwide extend to his children, Ashley, Dale, Roberta and Tracey and the entire Peters family, as well as brothers-in-law, Allan, Calvin, Ivan and Derek

Bruce, our deepest possible sympathy. David Peters' ministry is certainly one for the history books of AE. Thank you, Lord, for granting us the privilege of knowing such a true Champion for Christ.

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