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Studia Historiae Ecclesiasticae

versión On-line ISSN 2412-4265
versión impresa ISSN 1017-0499

Studia Hist. Ecc. vol.36 no.2 Pretoria oct. 2010


The beautiful birdsong of Tshwane: Preliminary reflections on the beginnings of the Uniting Reformed Church of Southern Africa (URCSA) congregation Melodi ya Tshwane



Willem Saayman

Department of Christian Spirituality, Church History and Missiology, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa




The author recounts the history and reflects on the founding of the URCSA congregation Melodi ya Tshwane in the central business district of the Tshwane metropole. The history of this unique congregation has not yet been written. The congregation grew out of joint services of the various black Dutch Reformed Churches in Pretoria in the 1980s. It was the first black Dutch Reformed congregation constituted in "white" Pretoria. Prof Nico Smith, Dutch Reformed Church in Africa (DRCA) pastor in Mamelodi, and Prof JNJ Kritzinger of Unisa played a very important role in the constitution of this congregation, which today forms the centre of various religious and social ministries, as well as URCSA theological education, in central Pretoria.



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Works consulted

Anderson A 1992. Bazalwane: African Pentecostals in South Africa. Pretoria: University of South Africa.         [ Links ]

Bosch DJ 1991. Transforming mission: paradigm shifts in theology of mission. Maryknoll: Orbis.         [ Links ]

De Klerk FW 1998. Die laaste trek - 'n nuwe begin: die outobiografie. Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau.         [ Links ]

Kilian J (ed.) 1993. Religious freedom in South Africa. Pretoria: Institute for Theological Research, University of South Africa.         [ Links ]

Saayman W 1993. Religious freedom in apartheid South Africa, in Kilian, J (ed.) 1993. Religious freedom in South Africa. Pretoria: Institute for Theological Research, University of South Africa.         [ Links ]

Saayman W 2007. Being missionary being human: an overview of Dutch Reformed Mission. Pietermaritzburg: Cluster.         [ Links ]

Saayman W 2009. Die beroerder Israels: 'n biografiese waardering van Nico Smith. Pretoria: Publiself.         [ Links ]

Smith NJ 2010. Hoe die God van my vaders vir my in Mamelodi gesterf het. Unpublished manuscript, to be published in 2010 as recollections of Smith's years in ministry in Mamelodi (English translation: The god of my father died for me in Mamelodi, by W Saayman).         [ Links ]



1 Prof Willem Saayman is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Missiology at the University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa.

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