He is in the Boat - a message of healing and hope 

BY Mr Ken du Pisanie


JAYDE Panayiotou

24 April 2015


On one occasion the Lord was walking with his disciples next to a lake. They came to a boat, and he said to them, “Let’s go to the other side of the lake.” This was a faith statement. He knew, come what may, we are going to the other side of the lake. Half way into the journey, a terrible storm arose over the lake, threatening to sink the boat. The disciples were afraid, and looked for the Lord. But he was asleep in the boat. They woke him up and said, “Aren’t you afraid that we will drown?” He responded by saying, “Oh you of little faith. Have you forgotten that I promised to take you to the other side?”

Right now a terrible storm has arisen in your lives. It threatens to sink a large part of your existence. The storm has filled you with fear and anxiety and anger and questions and doubt… You want to shake your God awake and scream, “Are you not concerned that we are drowning???”

Friends, it may seem that God is asleep. But I want you to know that He is in the boat! I DON’T KNOW how he’s going to take you through this storm! I don’t understand the storm and I don’t have the answers to the storm! But I KNOW that He is in the boat! And as long as He is in the boat, this boat IS going to the other side!

Today I ask you: Just allow Him to be in your boat. You don’t have to like Him very much right now. You don’t have to understand His ways. You can even dislike Him and be doubtful of His ways. But simply allow Him to be in your boat. Allow Him to be present as you deal with a mountain load of pain and distress. He has promised to bring comfort and to give strength. Simply allow Him to, in His unique and beautiful way, bring that which He has promised and restore hope to your hurting heart.

Imagine … Nothing to kill or die for…
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace...
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world...

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one

(Imagine by John Lennon)


I never knew Jayde Panayiotou personally, only as a teacher of my daughter.  But I have a sense that she was a dreamer. Speaking to several of her friends, colleagues and pupils, one quickly realizes that Jayde Panayiotou was a person who brought light wherever she was. One of her favourite phrases was “Be the light.” Wherever there was darkness, she would bring light. If someone was feeling down or discouraged, she, through her words, actions or mere presence, brought a sense of hope. If someone was feeling sad or lonely, she would offer comfort and companionship. It seems that darkness seldom, if ever, got the better of her. On the contrary, she was an agent of light wherever she was, chasing out different forms of darkness around her and in people’s lives.

John 1:5 - The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.

I believe the greatest tribute that we can bring to Jayde is to continue shining the light she did, which the darkness cannot extinguish. Instead of allowing darkness through despair, we shine a light of hope. Instead of bringing darkness through fear, we shine a light of hope. Instead of bringing darkness in hate, we shine a light of hope.

One day I will say, and my children will say, and their children will say, “I have lived a life of light and love and hope, and the darkness has not extinguished it. And my light and my hope was motivated by a teacher that I knew in Uitenhage, who inspired me to live that life of light and hope, through the live she lived so well.”

Make me a channel of your peace,
Where there is hatred, let me bring Your love,
Where there is injury, Your pardon Lord,
And where there's doubt, true faith in You

Make me a channel of your peace,
Where there's despair in life let me bring hope,
Where there is darkness - only light,
And where there's sadness, ever joy

(Jon Cohen)

 April 25, 2015
Comments (0)
Latest news
Mr Ken du Pisanie

Leave a comment

Keep me updated?

Comments are moderated.
Be the first person to comment.

News Archives


Authors / Contributors

Select an Author
Select an Author
Jessica Schoeman (9) Mrs A Peltason (1) admin (1) Administrator (55) Ambesa Daniels (1) Amy Higgins and Miss R. Meyers (1) Angelique and Miacarla Tee (1) Angelique Tee (7) Aziwe Booi (1) Bernadette Macguire (1) Busi Rooibard (1) Busiswe Rooibard (1) Busiswe Setlai (1) By Mikhayla Michaels (1) By Naqeesha Koester (1) By Nuraan Kasmed (1) By Sinovuyo Madlavu (2) Carleen Braun (2) Carmynn Collins and Tayla Boscombe (1) Chiara Rossi (1) Dr Boucher (typed by Mrs Stroebel) (1) Dr Boucher and the Going Green team (1) Dr R. Boucher (2) Drew MInter (1) Erinn Kettledas & Wade-Lee Muller (1) Francesca Gottini (1) Harmony at the Choir Camp (1) Heather Wilkinson (13) Hostel Leadership (1) Julienne Van Aardt (1) Junior Head Girl (1) Kate-Lynn Forbes and Liqhawe Nogampula (1) Kauthar Ravat (1) Kristin Hunt (1) Kuathar Ravat (1) Lindsay McFarlane and Michaela Balie (1) Lindsay McFarlane (1) Linley Myburg Fourie (1) Loren Campbell (4) Malakhiwe Hoffman (3) Martez Meyer (5) Media Team (1) Megan Potgieter (3) Miss A. Johnson (2) Miss C Panayiotou (1) Miss C. Panayiotou (1) Miss C. van der Westhuizen (1) Miss J. Botha (1) Miss J. Hattingh (1) Miss K. Potgieter (1) Miss K. Potgieter and Mrs C. Kruger (1) Miss R. Thomson (1) Mr A. Calitz (1) Mr B. Jonas (1) Mr Ken du Pisanie (1) Mrs A. M. Peltason (1) Mrs A. Peltason (3) Mrs B. Viljoen (2) Mrs C. Chrysostomou and Megan Potgieter (1) Mrs C. Snyman (1) Mrs Chrysostomou (1) Mrs Gerber (1) Mrs J. Panayiotou (2) Mrs K. Stear (5) Mrs L. Stroebel (1) Mrs M Woods (1) Mrs M. Woods (10) Mrs R. Meyers (1) Mrs S Gerber (1) Mrs S. Gerber (1) Mrs T. Gunter (1) Natheera Sirkhotte   (1) Nicola McEwan (1) Nicole Rhodes (2) Omhle Bissett (1) Professor Jackie Hoare (1) Rebecca Wilkinson (1) Riebeek College (1) Riebeek Staff (1) Saneliswe Jikeka (2) Simbulele Gosani and Yonela Mali (1) Sinovuyo Madlavu (4) Siviwe Tole (4) Tamryn Blignaut (1) Tayla Boscombe (1) The Boarders (1) The Juniors (1) Tirrell Hobbs (1) Valentina Longari and Jessica Schoeman (1) VALENTINA LONGARI (1) Valentina Longaria (2) Yolanda Mni (1) Yonela Mali, Lisakhanya Duruwe, Natheera Sirkhotte (1) Ziva Isaacs (2)

Latest News

News Archive

latest headlines at riebeek:

mermaid splash gala

BY Miss J. Hattingh

Splish Splash It's a Mermaid Bash! This year's Junior Mini Fun Gala was filled with great excitement, fun and laughter.
The morning began with the much anticipated house dances which saw Eleanor clinching first place and Elizabeth receiving special recognition for their gorgeous outfits. Our team swimmers opened the gala in style with a 50m freestyle challenge. The girls thoroughly enjoyed the fun races and the delicious eats at the tuckshop that were provided by the Grade 7s.

The gala drew to a close with the grade 6s winning the intergrade relay and Elizabeth winning the interhouse relay. As a new event at the gala to celebrate their last year, the grade 7s did a mermaid treasure hunt for coins at the bottom of the pool. This proved challenging as the pool was so murky!
A big thank you to all the girls for participating and cheering all day, to the many parents who came to support, the Grade 7s and their parents for contributing to the tuckshop, Mr Smith, Mr Lawson and Mr Reynolds for officiating the gala, Mrs Craill for helping with the tuckshop and to the teachers for their tireless enthusiasm. Thank you to Miss Hattingh for her co-ordination of the event with the assistance of the junior school teachers
 March 21, 2018
Comments (0)

Welcome, miss van der westhuizen

BY Miss C. van der Westhuizen

Riebeek College extends a warm welcome to Miss van der Westhuizen who joins the Riebeek staff from Term 2: Miss van der Westhuizen writes: "I was born and bred in Uitenhage. I started school at the age of 5 at Bambi, went to College Hill and then spent my schooling career at Riebeek College.
I studied at NMMU where I completed my B.Ed degree majoring in Languages (IP). I completed the practical aspect of my degree as a student teacher at Riebeek in 2013. I furthered my studies and completed my B.Ed Honours in 2014 which was the same year that I started teaching! I was a teacher assistant at Riebeek for six months after graduating before I started teaching at Strelitzia, and that’s where I’ve been for the last four years.
I love my church and I’ve been a youth leader for the last eight years. I love working with young people, being able to impact them and play a role in helping them to discover who they are.
My interests and hobbies include writing, youth and community involvement, reading, traveling, romance novels and playing tennis.
I would describe myself as being down to earth, but also a perfectionist at times. I’m caring and have a big heart. I love spending time with family and friends. I’m a wanderlust - I love adventure! I want to travel the world, see beautiful places and explore the uncharted.
I love teaching because, as a teacher, you are seen as a role model, an inspiration. You get to play a role in helping a child find their place and their identity. You get to see how a child grows from the minute she steps into your classroom for the first time to the last day of school. I get to give back and pour out the wisdom and knowledge that I gained when I was at school. And that’s amazing!
I’m so excited to be back at the school that taught me so much, the school that played a massive role in mounding me into the woman I am today."

 March 21, 2018
Comments (0)

Farewell, Mrs Chrysostomou

BY admin
Riebeek Old Girl, Mrs Chrysostomou, leaves Riebeek…again, but this time the departure is more intense than the time we watched her in the Valedictory tunnel. This time, she leaves as a married professional, a blossoming teacher whose time here was characterised by vigour and enthusiasm, who has endured trauma and shown us the principle of strength in adversity.
Mrs Chrysostomou matriculated from Riebeek College in 2006 with her trademark involvement and enthusiasm in evidence: Interact Club, Dance Committee (heading the Miss Riebeek Portfolio), Grade 11 RCL, Wild Life Society, Prefect, Eleanor Vice House Captain, Second Team Hockey and the School Indoor Hockey side. She studied at NMMU and undertook the practical component of her qualification at Riebeek in 2011. After a gap year in Cyprus, Mrs Chrysostomou joined the Riebeek Family as a staff member in 2013.
Riebeek was the perfect fit for this enthusiastic, capable and vibrant young teacher. Working with a best friend, Mrs T. Woods, Mrs Chrysostomou taught Grade 6s and then Grade 7s. She served as a Grade Head, the Junior first and second team hockey coach, the teacher in charge of Junior Going Green and the Junior Computer Lab, Junior Hockey Festival co-organiser, Sasol Enviro Quiz to Free State in 2014, Junior Inter-house hockey co-ordinator, Stay-Awake coordinator and Junior Movie Days co-ordinator.

The learners speak of her hockey tours with awe. They loved that she taught them card games and board games. They enjoyed her technology innovations in the classroom and how much effort she put equipping the junior school computer room. She brought lessons to life with the i-pads. She broadened the girls’ general knowledge and she encouraged them to take part and do more. She warned them of the dangers of social media. She not only taught her subject or coached her hockey teams, she infused her time with the girls with character building and holistic development. Her work with the junior Going Green club led to dirty girls, vegetables grown and recycled items forming outdoor furniture around the junior prefabs.

Megan Potgieter, Grade 8, wrote: “Whether it be on the hockey field or in the classroom, Mrs Chrysostomou brings a certain excitement everywhere she goes. She has shown love, respect and support. Her tough love and hard work is shown with her hockey teams. Mrs C, we wish you good luck and thank you for all your jokes and important lessons. You will be missed.”

Mrs Woods said, ““It’s not what you have in life, but who you have that matters.” This statement rings true for Mrs Chrysostomou. She has enriched lives at Riebeek College, for the past 5 years, giving of herself and her time to fulfill the needs of the learners. She has always been willing to go the extra mile for the Riebeek girls. Her learners and sports teams have always benefited from her love of adventure. Last year’s Junior Hockey team went on tour to hike, see tigers and go on a boat ride with Mrs Chysostomou. Her love for fashion and the latest trends is admired by the staff and the girls. We all agree that Mrs Chrysostomou looks “on point”. l will miss the cup of coffee from her when she knows I am having a tough day, our walks up to class, sharing our lunch because we are trying to eat healthily but we are always hungry, our evening phone calls to chat about the day and supper, our unhealthy obsession with Le Creuset and the latest must-have kitchen gadget, and comparing how layers of clothing in winter.”
Miss Hattingh fondly remembers winter days when Mrs Chrysostomou came knocking on her door, either looking for a blanket or begging her to join her to sit in the sun. Grade 6 and 7 classes would work on the tennis court so that there could be warmth.
Mrs Chrysostomou has a great way with babies and children. Mrs Viljoen, Mrs Gunter and Mrs Gerber attest to Mrs Chrysostomou being a favourite aunt to their children. Mrs Chrysostomou is a loyal friend and the staff have relied on her for Greek rusks, the latest music, help with technology and advice. She has been a pillar of strength through the toughest of times.
The travelling bug has bitten Mrs. Chrysostomou numerous times. She loves to travel. As she and her husband embark on more travels and adventures, we hope that they continue to make memories together. Mrs Woods wrote, “Chloe, my girl, we will miss seeing you every day, but we are all very excited for you as you and Angelo embark on this new journey together. You deserve all the happiness in the world.”
For Mrs Chrysostomou, there were many highlights at Riebeek. She enjoyed the opportunity to work with the people she did, especially being fortunate to work closely with best friends and to bounce ideas off of each other’s ideas and energy. The junior school concert led to feeling proud when she saw Jaymee Swanepoel and Erinn Kettledas pull off the main Jackson moves. Hockey tours were special and she loved seeng what the girls gained from it. She also realised how much she learnt from the girls too on tour. Seeing the girls grow and building relationships with them, realising how helpful Riebeek girls are and noting that each learner has a purpose in the classroom were special aspects of Riebeek. Last year’s Grade 7s effort to make 2017 a great year will be remembered: “Each girl took initiative to play an important part of each day in the classroom. Whether it was cleaning the class, making everyone laugh at the start of each morning, writing articles, editing articles, making sure we were up to date with music for events, making sure we had good movies for movie days and constantly reminding me about important things... this was all the girls’ efforts.” The saying " The floor is lava" which the Grade 7's of 2017 would randomly scream out in class when she was teaching would mean they all had to jump onto seats and continue working in order to survive. She will miss the family handshake of her classes and the positive morning greetings every class sings. She will miss knocking on teachers’ doors to distract the teachers a bit, make their day a little more interesting and unsettle their classes slightly, just for fun. She loves how protective they are about the Grade 6 and 7 prefab area.
Mrs Chrysostomou remembers, with gratitude, often knocking on Mrs Snyman’s door for her first two years at Riebeek for guidance when it came to English teaching and then the last three years for every other issue that came about or advise needed. Another mentor was Jayde, who she worked side by side with. Mrs M Woods’ continuous words of wisdom and time spent with the staff were cherished too.
“Riebeek has been a big part of my life. It has helped me grow personally and professionally. I will cherish the friendships that I have built, what I have learnt from my colleagues and the memories. The girls will always be special to me as they always went out of their way to make me laugh, no matter what. I am grateful for the support that Riebeek has given me and the unconditional love from the girls and staff when I needed it most,” were Mrs Chrysostomou’s farewell words.
Mrs Chrysostomou leaves Riebeek with these words of wisdom:” Don’t let your troubles from yesterday affect who you are and what you do today because in life "tough times don't last, tough people last." Always move forward: #AlwaysForward because Hakuna Matata. Hold your head up high and don't let anything stop you from succeeding. Walk through life with dignity. Stay humble. You never know what path you end up on so be true to yourself. I believe that the biggest test is life itself. We are here to be pushed and tried to see how far we can go, and there is nothing you cannot handle. Do not stress, its contribution is futile. It is how you present yourself and how you decide to handle a situation that determines your results. There are two options; you can either choose to learn, become better, grow and inspire or let it be your downfall. It is ultimately your choice. Have a goal, stick to your intuitive and make a success of yourself. No excuses.”
 March 21, 2018
Comments (0)

OK / Close