Sunday 25 September saw the launch of the Christians@Rhodes Mission “Break the Mould”, with a service held in the Cathedral. During the week, various lunch time and evening talks were given by a variety of speakers from different churches and Christian organisations. Claire Nye Hunter led an evening seminar entitled “Was St. Paul a sexist?” – an impression that might be gained from his writings such as “Women be silent”, “I do not permit a woman to teach or have authority over a man”, “Wives submit to your husbands”, “Women cover your heads when prophesying” etc. Focusing on the text “Women be silent”, she led the students in a guided exercise following recognised principles of interpretation and discovering the principle that Paul was teaching. Judging by the comments and feedback, it was a liberating, eye opening and well received message!
The universities of this country have been the subject of much earnest prayer at this time of unrest over very high student fees, which make the cost of tertiary education almost impossible for the vast majority of students. Both Dean Andrew and Claire have been (and continue to be) a prayerful, pastoral and peacekeeping presence on Rhodes campus. Pray that a peaceful and constructive way forward will be found.
On 4 September we welcomed Bishop Ebenezer Ntlali for a splendid Archdeaconry Confirmation, at which Lou-Anne and her son Lyndon Liebenberg, and Cebolenkosi Mkhize, were also received into membership of the Anglican Church. Members of the Cathedral family confirmed were: Sive Bavuma, Rutendo Chisina, Tyla Fourie, Zenande Landu, Zukisa Manana, Siphokazi Matini, Tebogo Matshana, Mandilakhe Ncwadi, Anele Nonyathi, Saki Sigqubo, Nkosinathi Sododo, Zanele Twaku, and Onelani Williams. Takundanashe (Taku) Chinogwenya was unwell and so missed the service, but fortunately was able to be confirmed at DSG on 10 October. Another member of the Cathedral family who was confirmed at DSG that day was Hlumela Kondile, daughter of Zoleka Maqwili. Our prayers for them all as they take this next step in their Christian journey.
An even larger event took place in Grahamstown over the weekend of 27-28 August, when representatives from all over the Diocese gathered in Joza for the annual Diocesan Family Weekend. The committee which organised this was chaired by our Sub-Dean and Archdeacon, Mzi Dyantyi. Congratulations to him and his team on the success of this weekend of fun, fellowship and fund-raising, which culminated in a huge service in the Joza Indoor Sports Centre and raised a record-breaking sum.
Individuals and families can also feel at home in the Cathedral celebrating their personal milestones. Dr Gilimamba Mahlati and Dr Vuyokazi Mahlati have been married for thirty years, and they decided to make our Cathedral the setting for a wonderful service of thanksgiving and renewal of marriage vows on 10 September. We wish them every blessing in their continued life together.
The Amasango Career School joins the Cathedral in being the recipient of a Coventry Cross of Nails. During the second World War the ancient cathedral in Coventry, England, was bombed, and so severely damaged that it was never rebuilt, but instead a new cathedral was erected next door to the ruin. Some of the medieval nails from the destroyed cathedral were used to make a cross, which has become the symbol of the Community of the Cross of Nails, a network of church organisations which share a common commitment to work and pray for peace, forgiveness and reconciliation. Many churches all over the world belong to this network and display replicas of the Cross of Nails. Ours is in the Lady Chapel on the right of the altar. More recently the Cross of Nails community founded ICONS (International Cross of Nails Schools), an organisation to provide resources for youngsters to explore issues of justice, peace and reconciliation. The Amasango Cross of Nails was presented to the school on 12 August by Sarah Hills, Coventry Cathedral’s Canon for Reconciliation Ministry, who was visiting South Africa.
Marian Walwyn, former Churchwarden at the Cathedral and married to our parish secretary Chris, was delighted to be honoured by Oatlands School. She taught there for 14 years, until her retirement in 2008. For the first time the school decided to establish four Houses, and they are named after the school’s first four headmistresses: Mesdames Newby, Baines, Lloyd – and Walwyn! Walwyn House colour is red. Marian is said to be “extremely chuffed and not a little humbled” at this well-deserved honour. Prayers are asked for Chris, who is to undergo an operation in November.
Congratulations to Cwayita Bam, part of the Bishop’s family, who has been elected Head Day-girl at DSG for 2017. Lutho Zono, the Kingswood Head Girl and former Cathedral chorister who was mentioned in last month’s People and Places as assisting the Student Core Group at the Seniors’ Tea, was honoured by being the recipient of the school’s prestigious Neil Aggett award for outstanding community engagement. She received this on the occasion of the annual Neil Aggett lecture, this year given by the outgoing Public Protector, Adv. Thuli Madonsela.
Patrick and Cathy Pringle recently enjoyed a visit of their daughter Janet, from India, and spent some time travelling with her and visiting the family farm. Maggy Clarke went to Cape Town to join her daughter Beccy Stones and family, to attend the national rounds of the Hubert van der Spuy competition for junior school instrumentalists, in which her grandson Alexander played his violin. Although he did not get through to the final, it was a good chance to hear the wonderful playing of the finalists, and to enjoy the beach at Table View with the grandchildren.
Claire Nye Hunter, together with others from our Diocese, joined 1500 Anglicans from across the Province at the “Anglicans Ablaze” Conference held in Cape Town from 5-8 October. The keynote speakers all gave very challenging and contextually relevant talks within the broader theme of “Intentional Discipleship”.
AJ Bethke took 17 of the junior choristers to Hogsback over the weekend of 30 September to 2 October. He was ably assisted by Sally Terry and Anelisa Kelemi. They had fun, did a lot of singing, and led the music at the morning service in St Patrick’s Church on the Sunday. The last time this camp was held was in 2014, and it is hoped it will continue to be held every two years.