For the last few days a man has sat beside a morbidly decorated camper van alongside the Sea Point promenade, blasting gospel music at nobody in particular. The van is covered with phrases attributed to the Bible, though I don’t remember the bit in John 3 that says “It’s all about Jesus.” A large wooden cross has been fastened to one side; a crown of thorns dangles from the mirror. The man doesn’t approach anyone. He just sits there, singing along to the McMelodies booming across the bay. He is not so much a fisher of men as a mechanised gill-netter. He has, it seems, decided that broadcasting his faith is as good as actively going out and trying to convert people. I’ve watched politicians do the same thing in the past few weeks. The belief is strong, the amplifiers are pumping, but most of the evangelising seems to have been done in stadiums full of converts. Lost souls have been left to wander unsaved. Their message, too, has been lazy, although perhaps details aren’t a good idea ...

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