A new start.

Svein Åge Mathisen

Svein Åge Mathisen

In my teens there was suddenly also other denominations, completely different than what we were used to. And we were allowed to go with friends to youth camp and visit other church youth groups. Like the Methodists and Baptists.

Youth camps were just a way to meet new friends, never got involved in the evangelical side of things. Good place to meet girls, and make new friends.

At the age of fifteen I left my grandparents in Cape Town to stay with my mom and her new family in Johannesburg. (8th ave. in Bezuidenhaut Valley) This was like a new start where somehow I felt that life had meaning. That summer was the best in my life, two beautiful girls lived across the road from us,  and wanted to be friends. My new best friend ‘Vanessa’ introduced me to music and romance, remember she gave me my very first kiss. She was my very first girlfriend, but I was still very immature and didn’t understand very much. Later started school at Queens High and got into the first team in rugby, was now very popular and had many friends. Then suddenly we moved to Kensington, dont even remember moving.

One day I went to a church with my mom and Jack, The Valley Baptist Church in Johannesburg. The preaching had spirit and fire, sat in awe at the meetings, completely different than the Catholic Church. Paster Piesley had a burden for the lost, and so had the congregation. Summer camp was maybe the best in my youth, got my own bible and evan underlined some verses.

Svein Åge Mathisen - 1976

Svein Åge Mathisen – 1976

So one day on the bus to school ‘Queens High’, some guy stole my ten pack of smokes. Few days later he came to me nearly crying, for he was under conviction for stealing from a christian. He wanted to get saved that day, so after school we walked up to the pastors house. Preyed for him out in the garden, and then he was saved. Remember one of the elders who was also there gave me a new testament bible for soul winners, still got it. That was the first time i led somebody to Jesus, Stephen Tayler was his name, believe he moved back to England. Often reminded of him, hope he is still serving the Lord.

Then after a rugby match one day, mom told that my grandfather had passed away. That evening we flew to Cape Town to my sister and grandmother, that seemed to be the end of life for me.

From that day life started spiraling down the wrong path, I was told that had I never left Cape Town then my grandfather would still be alive, I had broken his heart.