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Our Formation

Our Formation

Jacobus Francois Smit was born in Ortjiwarongo, Namibia, on August 24th, 1976. At age 6, his family immigrated to South Africa. Francois did not know his birth father but grew up with his stepfather, whose last name––Fineberg––he ultimately adopted. 


Francois did not grow up in a “Christian household.” His heart was eventually drawn to God in 1993 when he worked at a restaurant in Pretoria. A manager of that restaurant, Hans, led Francois to the Lord, and on July 28th, 1993, Francois received the saving life of Jesus Christ. 


The initial vision for the ministry of LEGACY came in April 1995 in South Africa. Francois was ministering at a High School in the Cape Province. He overheard a teenage girl speak about her dream of attending a “spiritual school.” It was through that teenager that Francois’ calling as a “teacher” was instantly established. He knew that he would pioneer a ministry to help people in their spiritual formation.


Twelve years of spiritual training ensued before LEGACY Ministries was birthed in September 2007 in Birmingham, Alabama. Seven students attended the first training, which was altogether eleven months. The training was split between Birmingham, Israel, and California at that time.


In May of 2013, an alumni family invited Francois and Wendy to Lake Martin for Memorial Day weekend. During that visit, God burdened the family to donate their 40-acre property to LEGACY Ministries for the spiritual work to which Francois had been called. LEGACY Ministries obtained its full-time campus in May 2013.


Alumni families have made the development of the campus possible throughout the ensuing years. Alumni families have likewise contributed to LEGACY’s ability to scholarship students.

Our Focus

It is apparent from the New Testament record that the apostle Paul had a specific focus that propelled him onward in his ministry.
At LEGACY, we carry the exact same focus.

Our Focus
Meet The Team

Meet The Team

LEGACY Ministries' Full-Time Workers

Our Faith

Our Faith

We accept those areas of doctrinal teaching on which historically there has been general agreement among all true Christians. Because of the specialized calling of our ministry, we desire to allow for freedom of conviction on other doctrinal matters, provided that any interpretation is based upon the Bible alone, and that no such interpretation shall become an issue which hinders the ministry to which––we believe–– God has called us.

There is one true God, eternally existing in three persons–Father, Son and Holy Spirit–each of whom possesses equally all the attributes of Deity and the characteristics of personality.


Jesus Christ is God, the living Word, who became flesh through His miraculous conception by the Holy Spirit and His virgin birth. Hence, He is the perfect Deity and true humanity united in one person forever. He lived a sinless life and voluntarily atoned for the sins of men by dying on the cross as their substitute, thus satisfying divine justice and accomplishing salvation for all who trust in Him alone. He rose from the dead in the same body, though glorified, in which He lived and died. He ascended bodily into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God the Father, where He, the only mediator between God and man, continually makes intercession for His own.


Man was originally created in the image of God. He sinned by disobeying God; thus, he was alienated from his Creator. That historic fall brought all mankind under divine condemnation. Man’s nature is corrupted, and he is thus totally unable to please God. Every man is in need of regeneration and renewal by the Holy Spirit.


God’s invitation is for all men to repent and to come into the faith. When anyone believes into Christ and by the Spirit says, “Jesus is Lord,” this person is born again and becomes a living member in the one Body of Jesus Christ. The holistic salvation of man is wholly a work of God’s free grace and is not the work, in whole or in part, of human works or goodness or religious ceremony. God imputes His righteousness to those who put their faith in Christ alone for their salvation, and thereby justifies them in His sight.


It is the privilege of all who are born again of the Spirit to be assured of their salvation from the very moment in which they trust Christ as their Savior. This assurance is not based upon any kind of human merit, but is produced by the witness of the Holy Spirit, who confirms in the believer the testimony of God in His written Word.


Jesus Christ, although seated at the right hand of the Father in glory, is at the same time within His believers via His own life-giving Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the very essence of Christ who now works within the believers to conform them to the very image of Christ. Christlikeness is the destiny of all Christ’s followers and the exclusive work of the Holy Spirit. His fullness, power and control are appropriated in the believer’s life by faith.


Jesus Christ is the Head of the Church, His Body, which is composed of all men, living and dead, who have been joined to Him through saving faith. Jesus’ Church is a living, spiritual body, baptized into Christ’s Person, in which Christ is the Head and of which all regenerated people are constituting members.


Jesus Christ will come again to the earth––personally, visibly and bodily––to consummate history and the eternal plan of God. We are not entirely sure when this day will occur.

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