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About Us

The Parish was founded by the Fathers of the Society St John the Evangelist commonly known as S.S.J.E. or Cowley.

It’s foundation stone was laid on the 24th May 1934 by the then Governor-General of the Cape of Good Hope, His Excellency, The Earl of Clarendon.
On that memorable day, colourful activities were held by groups of girls and women known as Sunbeams (7 – 12 year olds), Wayfarers (13  -  20 yrs olds) and Torch-Bearers (21 and over) as well as boy scouts.

The Fathers had immigrated from the Mother House (Cowley House)  at the present St Cuthberts mission, Tsolo, presently known as Ngcolosi. to set up a Mission station.  When manfolk from these areas were forced to migrate into cities like Johannesburg and CapeTown, the fathers decided to follow what was then called Stevedore workers, ie. Off-loaders of coastliners and railway workers.  These workers stayed in District Six. The SSJE established a Cowley House at 126 Chapel Street Cape Town.

The migrants were then forcibly moved to a new location which was arid with not a single house, known as Ndabeni.  They were there for some years.

Before 1934 Church services in Langa were held in the Primary School (erf 202) that was established in 1927.  The SSJE fathers used to stay in District Six and took turns to conduct services in Langa.  They would arrive on a Saturday, stay overnight in a house near the primary school.  On Saturday evening hey would attend to confessions and hold a preparatory service for Sunday Mass.  At the preparatory all prospective communicants for Sunday were expected to attend.

Between 1934 and 1936, when Ndabeni residents were forcibly moved to Langa, their church merged with that of Langa that already had the same patron saint.  The Ndabeni church movable property came to Langa.  Notably was the old big Ndabeni outside bell which lasted up to 1996 when it was replaced through the kind generosity of a Langa parishioner.

Between 1936 and 1956 the fathers continued to minister, administer and provide for this as such and for church services.  Special mention must be made of the following fathers, viz: Fr Bull, Fr Taylor, Fr C Savage, Fr Gardner, Fr Dakers, Fr Dalby, Fr Naters, Fr Rumsey and others.  Fr Mawu was the first African priest to come work in Cape Town as an assistant priest.
In 1956 the fathers handed over the parish to parishioners and Fr Albert Mabandla Mbizela became the first black priest of the parish.  Fr Mbizela was succeeded by Fr Greenstock Lewis Nyovane, succeeded by FFJ Ndungane (father to the present Archbishop).  Father Stanley Dilika Qabazi served his diaconate at St Cyprian’s.  Fr Ndungane was succeeded by Fr Dumezweni, who was succeeded by Fr Wiseman Brighton Bonakele Nkowane, succeeded by Fr Tamsanqa Lehlohonolo Moses Moletsane.  Father Sil Sobantu Msengana served this congregation as an assistant priest.  Fr Moletsane was succeeded by Fr Christian Tumelo Kokoali.  Fr Qabazi was then asked by the Archbishop to hold the fort until the present incumbent, Fr Nelson Zandisile Nongauza. 
Through their ministries and support given by parishioners, the spirit of Christian love and concern for others were manifest in all activities of the parish.  The dedication, zeal and foresight of the present incumbent is indicative of people and parish at work and is marching on confidently.



From 1934 till the mid 1980s, the Parish consisted of the church building, a catekist house, a primary school, a pre-school and two residence houses.
The primary school, the pre-school and the residences, regrettably had to be demolished as it was in a heart-breaking state of despair and a breeding place for criminal activities, due to the Diocesan negligence, vandalism and burglaries.  During the mid 1980’s, the present rectory was added to the building.

This rectory is situated in the church ground.  Currently in the church ground there is a church house where services are conducted, the rectory and the catekist house. 
The Rectory consists of four bedrooms all with built-in wardrobes, two bathrooms with toilets, large kitchen, dining room, lounge and a small kitchen that is converted to a small office, a TV room and one single garage.  The catekist house has six new toilets, three for men and three for women, two showers and a new geyser.

Presently the local community is made up of a wide-spread of people with regard to age and occupation.  There are still a significant number of older people, who tend to come to church regularly, and sick housebound or Indoor people in the parish.  There are a growing numbers of younger professional families moving into the parish.  There are also more and more young children (Sunday School) in the parish.  
There are sections of the parish where people need to be assisted with food and clothes due to poverty and unemployment.  Also we have New Apostolic, Roman Catholic, Presbyterian, Methodist, AME and Moravian congregations in the immediate vicinity.

The parish had outstations in Borosa, Durbanville and Milnerton areas for more than twenty years up until 2001.  We are now in the process of establishing a congregation in the Joe Slovo Informal settlement here in Langa.

• Morning service at 07H00  -  08H30
• Sung Mass at 09H30  -  11H30 with music led by the church choir and a sermon geared to motivate both the elderly and the young people.

• A Low Mass on Wednesdays at 07H30  -  08H00

• Local housebound or indoor members, sick and the elderly are visited monthly to give the word of the Lord, Prayer and Holy Communion. 
• Prayers for the bereaved families. the HIV & AIDS sufferers and the terminally ill at home and in hospitals.

Worship at St Cyprian’s Church is warm, friendly and joyous, with as much congregation participation by having members do sidemen duties, read the lessons, join in the prayers of the church and bring up the offertory.  About 50% of the congregation is above the age of 50.

• Sunday School :  At present we have three Sunday school teachers.  There are approximately 50 children who attend.  Sunday School classes are held during the Sunday Eucharist.  Children and teachers then join the congregation before the sermon.  Blessing of the children by the rector is done every first Sunday of the month.

• Mother’s Union (MU) :The MU is grouped into two groups, the Thursday group and the Saturday group with their respective leaders, under one enrolling member (uNomqulu).
• Bernard Mizeki Men’s Guild
• Anglican Women’s Fellowship (AWF)
• St Mary Magdelene Guild
• Youth Guild
• Girls Boys Men Friendly Society (BGM FS)
• Church Choir
• Nonkqubela.

9. STAFF (Non-Remunerable)
9.1 Layministers
We have ten dedicated and willing lay ministers licenced to serve the chalice and take Holy Communion to the sick.  Not only do they take on some of the duties of the Eucharist service, but they also form a tremendous back-up and support to the priest

9.2 Administrative
• Servers:  We have about 30 regular servers at the Eucharist
• Music:  We have a church choir to lead with music at the Eucharist service, funerals, weddings taking place in our church and wherever the priest conducts eucharist services.
• Flowers:  all our church groups adorn our church with flowers for worship every Sunday
• Cleaners:  We also have four dedicated ladies who volunteered to clean the church and the catekist house.  There is one gardner hired for cleaning and maintaining our church grounds.

The financial situation of the parish can be seen from the attached audited financial statement for the years 2000 and 2001.

• The parish is hard at work tying to make our worship more lively, attractive and relevant to younger people, while still caring for the wishes, needs and preferences of the elderly.
• Encouraging children back into Sunday School and Youth back into church.  We have small prayer groups meeting during the week for prayers and fellowship.

• To consolidate and uplift our fellowship to cater for the spiritual needs of our parishioners in Suburbs. 
• Build up the parish so that we can motivate our young people to join ministry.

• Thanksgiving service for Archbishop Emeritus Tutu by Archbishop Ndungane in 2001.which included a visit by the Crown Prince of Norway
• Regular visits by tourists nationally and internationally
• Erection of the 6 change rooms
• Paving and upkeep of the church ground

What stage have you reached with regard to the admission of Baptised children to Holy Communion?
We have not yet reached a stage of admitting baptised children to Holy Communion.  We do, however need time to prepare parents and children adequately for this.
What form of Baptism preparation takes place in your Parish especially with regard to the practice of infant baptism?  Who is responsible for this preparation?
The Rector is presently responsible for baptism preparation and does so by meeting with parents and Godparents of those to be baptised for at least two-hour sessions before hand.

What happens in the parish with regard to the preparation for marriages
Preparation for Christian marriages is undertaken by the rector through a set of three sessions with couples to be married.

What contacts, if any, do your parish have with churches of other denominations?  Is there a minister’s fraternal in your area and is your priest involved in it?
We have a very close ties with the local Methodist church, with whom we have combined to conduct special Christmas carols services, also with the Roman Catholics with whom we share the presentation of Palm crosses part of the service yearly on Palm Sundays . A Minister’s fraternal exist, and our priest is involved in it.

Are the needs of young people met in your congregation?
We have already indicated above what has been done with regard to young people.  We need to admit that our congregation is trying very hard to be more young person friendly.  This aspect needs major effort in future.

© 2014 ST Cyprians Langa