Dutch Reformed Church in Africa (DRCA) – NG Kerk in Afrika (NGKA)
The Dutch Reformed Church in Africa (DRCA) – Die Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk in Afrika (NGKA) has a General Synod (constituted 1963) and three regional synods namely: the Synod of the Orange Free State (constituted 1910 with circuits in the Free State, Eastern Cape, North-West Province and Lesotho), the Synod of Phororo and the Synod of North-and-South Transvaal. The church members are mainly Sotho, Tswana, Xhosa and Zulu speaking people. The DRCA was the result of a merger in 1963 of three churches – the Nederduitse Gereformeerde Bantoekerk in Suid-Afrika (with two regional synods: Kaapland, constituted 1951 and Natal, constituted 1952), the Nederduitse Gereformeerde Sendingkerk van Transvaal (with one regional synod: Transvaal, constituted 1932), and the Nederduitse Gereformeerde Sendingkerk in the Orange Free State (with one regional synod: Orange Free State, constituted 1910). Near the end of the apartheid era in South Africa, the DRCA began union negotiations with the Dutch Reformed Mission Church. The union was formalized in 1994, but for theological and procedural reasons, a large group of congregations decided to withdraw from the union. They fought for and won the right to regard themselves as the continuation of the DRCA with two regional synods namely Orange Free State and Phororo (Northern-Cape). (See the Declaration of the High Court of Appeal on 27 November 1998: Case nr. 536/96)
DOCTRINAL STANDARDS – CONFESSIONS OF THE DUTCH REFORMED CHURCH IN AFRICA (NG KERK IN AFRIKA)
The Dutch Reformed Church in Africa (DRCA) is firmly based on the Bible as the holy and infallible Word of God with five essential doctrines namely the “Five Solas” of the Protestant Reformation – “Sola Scriptura” or Scripture Alone, “Sola Gratia” or Salvation by Grace Alone, “Sola Fide” or Salvation by Faith Alone, “Solus Christus” or In Christ Alone and “Soli Deo Gloria” or For the Glory of God Alone. These essential doctrines is set out in the doctrinal standards or confessions of the DRCA namely in the three articles of faith that includes: The Dutch Confession of Faith (Confessio Belgica), The Heidelberg Catechism and The Canons of Dort. The DRCA adopted also the following ecumenical creeds namely: The Nicene Creed, Athanasian Creed and the Apostles Creed.