Friday, 20 October 2017
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André and Jenny Roebert

At a young age, both André and Jenny gave their lives to the Lord Jesus, sensing His call on their lives to impact the world with the love of God through the Gospel.

André and Jenny met while attending Hatfield Christian Church in Pretoria, the church André's uncle, the late Ps Ed Roebert, started. They were both involved in the youth ministry and André served in the media department and music team as well. A little known fact is that André plays the trumpet! He financed himself through Bible School being involved in business and commerce, where much of the commercial experience he has today was honed. The year 1990 was significant for André as this was the time where he gave up the pursuit of a business career in favour of full time ministry. A year later he joined a growing community church in King Williams Town in the Eastern Cape. After their wedding in March 1992 Jenny then joined André in the Eastern Cape where they served together as Youth Pastors. Some time later they became regional Pastors and within 4 years found themselves as assistants to the Senior Pastor and his wife. By this time the church began to explode in attendance and had a significant impact in the town and surrounding areas.

In 1996 God started to birth in both André and Jenny a deep desire to see an outpouring of the Holy Spirit in South Africa. As a result of being significantly impacted by the ministry of Dr Rodney Howard Browne, they formed the ministry Revival South Africa; the need to spread the fires of revival to the small towns and villages across Southern Africa compelled them to take a team and travel extensively from town to town. The motivation behind visiting the smaller towns of South Africa was partly spurred on by the fact that the more well known speakers and preachers tended to focus their attention on the larger metropolitan centres, and André and Jenny felt that the more rural population were as much in need of an encounter with God as their urbanised counterparts. Over the next two years the team of Revival South Africa saw thousands of people saved, set free from sin, and set on fire for God. During this time, they were significantly impacted by Kenneth Copeland Ministries, through their monthly magazines and television broadcasts, that provided a wealth of sound, Word based and faith filled teachings. Their hunger for the presence of God and His incorruptible Word fuelled their desire to see the world touched and changed by the powerful and life-giving Gospel.

André and Jenny followed the Lord's call to begin, what would soon become a ministry to touch the nation of South Africa, and later the entire continent of Africa and parts of Europe, in many ways, and so in 1998 The River Church was birthed. The church meetings were initially intended as a place where people could come to be refreshed in their spirits and have a significant encounter with God. The ministry schedule during that time was rather intense! A typical week would involve "church setup" (the church was held in a local East London theatre) from 5AM on a Sunday morning, church service, and then the striking of the "set" to be packed into a truck, ready for departure on Monday. Monday morning would see the team travel to the next town on the agenda, have meetings through to Friday evening, packed up and ready to travel back home on Saturday for the Sunday service. Every other week was spent at home catching up with all the administration associated with the ministry.

In September 1999 God led them into the first of many business ventures to come, enabling them to finance the ministry and vision God had given them to quicken the body of Christ and bring in the end time harvest of souls. One of the Farmers Cooperative Union buildings became available on the market, and the 50,000m2 building was purchased as a Ministry Centre and headquarters for the future River Group. Today it is still called River Park, and stands adjacent the harbour at the entrance to East London on the R72 road from Port Elizabeth.

Today André and Jenny are the CEO's of the River Group, comprising of over 47 different companies and ministries, touching people globally with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. With a multi-million Rand turnover annually, they have been able to stay focused to the call of God as the primary purpose of all they do. Today the group has hundreds of staff and is operational in many business centres around the nation of South Africa.

A national network of churches has been established and daily television broadcasts through Faith Broadcasting Network reach millions of homes every day. One such broadcast, Days of Glory 2009, saw over 188 000 souls come to accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour. The total number of people impacted by the 24/7 broadcasts through the various channels is incalculable, but the flood of testimonies received bear testimony to the effectiveness of the network.

Today the River Group has its own print company, bookshop, media centre, affiliated churches, River Air Charter Service (specialising in medical emergency flights), satellite television channels, broadcast and recording centre, building investments, a satellite radio broadcast channel, a hotel group, associated ministries and a humanitarian aid division in full operation. All of these work together as a whole in spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ, both effectively and efficiently, across the nations of the world. In order to facilitate the ever expanding global reach of the ministry, a USA office was also established in 2015, from where much of the international broadcast administration is coordinated. André and Jenny constantly strive to follow the plan of God for their lives, and to fulfil the vision and call of God through everything they do. This attitude is passed on to all who form a part of the ministry, and as a united team they support and continue the work of God. Both André and Jenny are adamant that the ministry is not about them, but that it is about God, and that the work they have started will continue long after they have gone to be with the Lord.

André and Jenny are the proud parents of three children, Jordan, Faith and Christian.