Message from the Chairman of the Board of Frontline Fellowship:
At the last Reclaiming America For Christ conference held at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, October 2003, the first speaker opened with these words: “If you don’t want to be criticized or attacked – then don’t follow or serve Christ.”
Peter Hammond should know. He has been criticized and attacked by Marxists and assorted enemies of Christ almost from the start of Frontline Fellowship in 1982. Since he launched Africa Christian Action (ACA) in 1991 he has received additional attacks from abortionists, pornographers and homosexuals. Since beginning his mission to Sudan, he has received even more criticisms and death threats from Muslim leaders. In fact the official Government of Sudan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs website has included an article attacking him by name. This article states that Dr Peter Hammond “should expect to be bombed” when he comes to Sudan, he should expect to be “shot on sight.” The article even goes on to explain why this missionary deserves to be bombed and shot, “because his writings make him an enemy of the state.”
The recent slander campaign against Peter Hammond contains nothing new. Most of the allegations were first lodged years ago by enemies of the Gospel – Marxists, Muslims, pornographers, abortionists and homosexuals. Some disgruntled ex-members of Frontline Fellowship, some of whom had to be dismissed for disgraceful conduct, have now adopted these slanders, generated by anti-Christian elements. It is noteworthy that they have chosen to adopt fictitious stories, exaggerations, fabrications, malicious and petty allegations, full of factual errors, not on the basis of facts or proof, but because of their prejudice and eagerness to believe the worst about one who had the duty to discipline them.
For those who have trouble understanding how Peter Hammond could have accumulated so many enemies, one must take into account what he has started and what he has written. Twenty-two years ago Peter founded Frontline Fellowship, which has pioneered missions to the persecuted church, primarily in Marxist and Muslims lands.
In 1986 Peter published The Mozambique Report, an eyewitness account exposing the Marxist mass-murder and persecution of Christians in communist Mozambique. Along with his later book In The Killing Fields Of Mozambique it was widely circulated and translated. It was read into the Congressional Record by Senator Jesse Helms of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and discussed in the House of Commons, in London. It led to the cessation of financial support for the Frelimo [communist] government by, among others, Norway. Shortly before being captured and arrested in Mozambique in 1989, Peter Hammond received a letter from the Ministry of Justice, Department of Religious Affairs, threatening his life if he ever came back to Mozambique.
The state newspapers in communist Zimbabwe published several hostile articles attacking him, because of his documentation of atrocities by Zimbabwe troops in Mozambique. They described Peter Hammond “as the most important supporter” of the RENAMO Resistance Movement.
In 1987 Kenneth Kaunda’s socialist government in Zambia arrested Peter. His case was personally taken up by British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher at the Commonwealth Conference in Vancouver. Because of international pressure, Dictator Kaunda personally ordered the release of Peter and his co-workers from the Lusaka Central Prison.
In 1991 Peter Hammond launched African Christian Action (ACA), which has for 13 years been championing the right to life for pre-born babies. ACA vigorously opposes abortion, pornography, homosexuality, gambling and other anti-Christian practices in South Africa.
Peter wrote the first anti-pornography book in South Africa, Finding Freedom From The Pornography Plaque in 1991, followed by a revision and expansion in 1994. “Operation Cleansweep,” which he launched, succeeded in bankrupting the South African editions of Playboy, Penthouse, and Scope magazines (all of which blamed ACA for their demise). ACA, along with other pro-family organizations in SA, succeeded in persuading the owners of over 9,000 retail outlets to no longer stock or sell pornography.
Peter’s anti-pornography campaign in South African was so successful that the editor of Hustler magazine phoned the ACA office and threatened to invest R200,000 ($57,200 at that time) in a private detective to “unearth any skeletons in Hammond’s cupboard.” Later, the South African edition of Hustler published its attack on Peter Hammond with a cover article, “Peter Hammond blue eyed Gunrunner.” In this prominent article Hustler alleged that Peter had smuggled firearms to the RENAMO Resistance Movement in Mozambique, UNITA in Angola and the SPLA in Sudan.
Peter co-authored and published Fight For Life, the first pro-life handbook in South Africa. He also wrote numerous articles and made frequent representations to Parliament and on national radio and TV concerning the right to life of pre-born babies. He also initiated the annual “LifeChains,” the “National Day of Repentance” and “Sanctity of Life Sunday.” For all of these and many other pro-life initiatives he has come under blistering attack from abortionists and the so-called “Pro-Choice” lobby.
Peter Hammond has also organized numerous marches to Parliament, including the 1995 and 1996 marches, which mobilized over 30,000 Christians to protest the government’s secular state Constitution, that legalized abortion and allowed pornography. After the May ’96 march, he was summoned by then President Nelson Mandela to his home for an hour-long meeting.
Peter challenged the current South African President Theo Mbeki’s “African Renaissance” in a book he co-authored with Tom Barlow, South Africa – Renaissance or Reformation? Peter’s book Holocaust In Rwanda exposed the United Nations’ complicity in the Rwandan holocaust.
His book Faith Under Fire In Sudan exposed the atrocities of the National Islamic Front (NIF) government in Sudan that has slaughtered two million Christians. He catalogued corruption in the UN operation there and exposed the UN’s role in prolonging the war.
Peter helped Jeremiah Films produce two documentaries – “Sudan: The Hidden Holocaust” and“Terrorism and Persecution,” both of which were based on his book Faith Under Fire In Sudan. These have proved to be the most effective films on the persecution of Christians in Sudan, revealing the atrocities of the NIF government and the complicity of the UN.
Dr. Peter Hammond designed various leadership training programs, writing the manuals and organizing courses, which have been conducted across the continent of Africa. These include, “The Biblical Worldview Seminar,” “The Great Commission Course,” “The Reformation Conference,” “God And Government Seminar,” and “Muslim Evangelism Workshop.” He has had irate Muslim extremists, brandishing this manual outside the gates of the Frontline mission headquarters in Cape Town, demanding to see him.
Consider the fact that over the past 20+ years Peter’s ministry has been in some of the most violent parts of Africa, during some of the most turbulent times of political unrest, warfare, riots and violence. He may be hated by homosexuals, abortionists, pornographers, Marxists and radical Muslims, but he is greatly loved in Sudan, Zambia, Zululand, Mozambique, Angola, and Zimbabwe by the persecuted Church, by prisoners, pastors, chaplains, teachers and medics whom he has helped to train and supported so consistently for up to two decades.
In 2001 Peter co-authored with Christine McCafferty The Pink Agenda – Sexual Revolution & The Ruin of The Family in South Africa. This book was condemned as “the worst homophobic hate speech ever written,” before it was even released and before one page had been read by the reviewers. The Gay and Lesbian Equality Project called for its banning even before its release. None of the vicious attacks on Peter and Christine dealt with any of the issues raised in the book, but chose instead to defame the messengers. These homosexual critics produced several of the slanders currently circulating today against Peter Hammond.
Although The Pink Agenda was originally censored by the Film and Publications Board, the Appeal Board later lifted all restrictions. It emerged that the head of the Gay and Lesbian Equality Project, who called for the banning of the book, was also a member of the Film and Publications Board! Conflict of interest?
It should be noted that the most vitriolic slander against Peter Hammond, published by Die Burger was the subject of a review by Judge Edward King under appeal. Die Burger was ordered to publish Africa Christian Action’s right of reply, with a link to the http://www.christianaction.org.za Website.
Peter’s new book Biblical Principles For Africa, in it’s first edition of 10,000, has almost sold out. Distributed throughout the continent of Africa, it has made a tremendous impact for free enterprise, Christian and home schooling, parental responsibility and authority in education. It promotes honoring the Lord’s Day and incorporating Biblical standards in entertainment. It takes a clear stand against socialism and humanism in state education. Biblical Principles For Africa has been praised by the President of Zambia and received by every Member of Parliament in Zambia – a country where Peter was once imprisoned!
Peter’s consistent, courageous, principled and humble servant-leadership of over 20 years has often led to his being misunderstood and criticized. One can expect such attacks by enemies of the Gospel. However, it is very sad when Christian brothers choose to adopt the slanders of the homosexuals, pornographers, and abortionists, Marxists and Muslims in order to smear one with whom they may have personal differences.
Finally, brothers, pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored, just as it is with you. And pray that we may be delivered from wicked and evil men, for not everyone has faith. 2 Thess. 3:1,2
Rev Bill Bathman, Chairman of the Board, Frontline Fellowship