Welcome to the Website of Grahamstown Cathedral, Makhanda!
Come in, browse around, make yourself at home! From contact details of the Cathedral staff to lists of forthcoming Sunday services, interesting information about our beautiful building, and lots of news (and archived news) of People and Places connected to the Cathedral family – it’s all here. Click on ‘Videos’ on the side menu to hear some of the music of Grahamstown Cathedral.
Articles from this website may be quoted if author and Grahamstown Cathedral Website are acknowledged.
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Calling all Seniors!
Dean Mzi and his wife Lilitha have issued an invitation to the Senior members of the parish to Tea on Wednesday 8 December, at 3 p.m. in the Deanery garden. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org, or 046 622 2445. If anyone requires transport, please contact the Parish Office, 046 622 2445.
Patronal Festival Weekend 30-31 October
The Cathedral’s Patronal Festival weekend began on Saturday 30 October with a Prestige Concert in the Cathedral, organised by Director of Music Kutlwano Kepadisa. This showcased the variety of talents God has given to members of the Cathedral and their friends. There were solo performances on a variety of instruments from the violin to the adungu, not forgetting the organ and piano, and we discovered that our Senior Organ Scholar is also a flautist! Then there were vocal solos, and the choral element was supplied by the Kwantu Choir, which is also conducted by Kepa.
On Sunday 31 October the Revd Dr Bill Domeris preached at both the morning services. Among items sung at the 9:30 Sung Eucharist by the Cathedral Choir was a Kyrie composed by Ambesa Cagwe, one of the two Head Choristers for 2022. Click here to listen to: Ambesa’s Kyrie; and ‘You Raise me up’ played on the violin by Tyreece Burger.
That evening at a service of Choral Evensong in the Cathedral chancel, Jeanette Eve spoke about the Angels depicted in the stained glass windows. An invited group of singers was conducted by Director of Music Kutlwano Kepadisa. Click here to listen to the Sanctus from ‘A Little Requiem’ by Andrew-John Bethke, with the solo sung by Bayanda Mthetho. Peter Black, Chapel Organist and Master of Choristers at St Andrew’s College, was the guest organist for the service, which was preceded by a short organ recital.
Dedication, Pledging and Financial Support for God’s Work
The month of October is Dedication Month at the Cathedral. Dean Mzi calls it “a time in which we thank God for our lives and the lives of those who are closely linked with ours and also a time in which we rededicate ourselves anew for the mission of God to continue in our community in terms of stewardship and giving.” Read more...
Those who would like to make a promise to contribute regularly to the ministry of the Cathedral, can download a Pledge Form here.
To celebrate the restoration of the Cathedral organ, an organ recital took place on Saturday 23 October 2021, with four featured soloists: Jonathan Hughes (Senior Organ Scholar), Bayanda Mthetho (Junior Organ Scholar), and their respective teachers Justin Stone (from Gqeberha) and Peter Black. They played works by Bach, Parry, Howells and Scott. The final work, ‘Suite Gothique’ by Léon Boëllmann, is in four movements, and each of the organists played one movement. Listen to YouTube recordings of the first movement, ‘Introduction – Chorale‘, played by Bayanda, and the second movement, ‘Menuet Gothique‘ played by Jonathan.
Choral Evensong returned to the Cathedral from Sunday 3 October. At first these services will only take place on the first Sunday of each month, at 5 p.m. They will also be live-streamed. Choral Evensong is a well-loved tradition of the world-wide Anglican Church, in which choirs offer of their best in the service of Almighty God, and for the upliftment of the congregation. All are welcome.
Provincial Synod meets virtually, recommends vaccinations for all clergy
The Synod of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa (ACSA) met virtually from 21-24 September. The Synod passed a resolution calling for the mandatory vaccination of clergy, and urging all Anglicans “to seriously consider vaccination as an act of love for both ourselves and our neighbour.”
On Friday 10 September Dean Mzi Dyantyi received his second vaccination against Covid-19. “You can also do the right thing to protect yourself and those around you” he said: “Let’s do this!”
There is an excellent informative short video (12½ minutes) produced by ACSA to explain why we should follow Dean Mzi’s example. Click here to view it.
New Canon of the Cathedral
In the Sacred Synod in St John’s East London, meeting on 7 September 2021, the Revd Noelene Arends was elected a Canon of the Cathedral Chapter of the diocese of Grahamstown. We congratulate her, and ask for God’s blessings upon her.
Student Services resume, now at 3 p.m.
The Student Services resumed as from Sunday 19 September. The time has changed, and they now take place at 3 p.m. For more details, contact the Sub-Dean, Canon Melany Adonis: 083 685 6033, email@example.com.
Cathedral Organ restored
Sunday 5 September 2021 was the first time the Cathedral organ could be played again after restoration by Pekelharing Organ Building. Listen to a selection of snippets: Jonathan Hughes on the organ, Kutlwano Kepadisa rehearsing the Iimvumi (Junior Choristers), and a snatch from the final voluntary after the service.
Makana Choir School AGM
The Makana Choir School held its AGM on 5 September. Chairperson Glyn Lloyd-Jones reported on an unusual year that was not without its highlights, and Director of Music Kutlwano Tshekiso Setchaba Kepadisa outlined hopes and aims for the year ahead. He also introduced the Head Choristers for 2022, seen here with him: Ambesa Cagwe (left) and Siyolise Sandi. Congratulations to them both!
29 August: Our Children’s Service
On Sunday 29 August the Sung Eucharist was a special occasion with an emphasis on parents and children. The songs were children’s favourites like ‘Jesus loves me’ and ‘Shine, Jesus shine’, and Canon Melany Adonis had a special story for the children. Listen to them singing ‘He’s got the whole world in his hands‘, led by Director of Music Kutlwano Kepadisa and the choir.
Death of former Dean, John Stubbs
The Revd Dr John Stubbs, who was Dean of Grahamstown from 1999 to 2006, died peacefully at his home in Chicago, USA, on 16 August 2021. We give thanks for his life and ministry, both here and in the United States, and pray for his family.
A virtual Memorial Service was live-streamed on our Facebook page on Thursday, 26 August. At this service a number of tributes were shared in voice notes. To read the tribute and biography compiled by Professor Paul Walters, click here.
The family have sent a link, should you wish to extend a message of condolence or share a memory with them. Click here.
Cathedral re-opens for Sunday Worship
It was a great joy to be able to return to the Cathedral and worship Almighty God together again on Sunday 1 August! Listen to Obianuju Njoku singing ‘Bless this House‘ (but she sang ‘Bless this Church’!) accompanied on the piano by Bayanda Mthetho.
The Cathedral is now open for Sunday services, as follows:
- 7.30 a.m. Holy Communion
- 9:30 a.m. Sung Eucharist (also live-streamed on our Facebook page)
- 3:00 p.m. Student Service (during University terms)
- (also live-streamed on our Facebook page)
At 5:00 p.m. on Sundays there is a service of Evening Prayer with music, live-streamed on our Facebook page.
You are also welcome to join in the daily offices of Morning and Evening Prayer, which are live-streamed at 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday to Friday, on our Facebook page.
At our in-person services at present the limit on attendance is 250 persons. All Covid-19 protocols are to be observed.
Archbishop’s reflections on current crisis in South Africa, 13 July 2021
South Africans and our friends world-wide have watched in horror as violence, looting and loss of life developed in various parts of the country, mainly in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng. On 13 July our Archbishop, Thabo Makoba, issued a Reflection on South Africa’s current crisis. To read it, click here.
The same evening he was interviewed by Newzroom Afrika’s programme InFocus. To watch a YouTube video of the second part of this, click here.
On Trinity Sunday it is traditional to sing “Holy, holy, holy…” In the Cathedral on 30 May we heard our Senior Organ Scholar, Jonathan Hughes, singing the setting by Schubert, accompanied on the piano by Junior Organ Scholar Bayanda Mthetho. Listen to this YouTube extract.
On 23 May the Cathedral rejoiced in the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. Everyone was encouraged to wear red – even the altar servers were in red! Andrew Tracey’s reading of the Ezekiel lesson was enlivened by snatches of the well-known song “Dem Bones”, with the congregation joining in with the words “DRY BONES!” And as a final reminder that Pentecost is the birthday of the Church, everyone was sent home with cupcakes, lovingly made and iced by Sally Terry and the altar servers.
Mzinzisi Dyantyi licensed as Dean of Grahamstown, 24 April
On Saturday 24 April the Cathedral had the joy of welcoming our new Dean, Mzinzisi Dyantyi, when he was licensed and installed by the Bishop of Grahamstown, Ebenezer Ntlali. We praise God for this wonderful service, and ask the Lord’s blessing on the ministry of Dean Mzinzisi and Sub-Dean Melany Adonis.
For more pictures, see our Gallery.
Meet the new Dean of Grahamstown, Mzinzisi Dyantyi
Mzinzisi Dyantyi, the new Dean of Grahamstown, is seen here with his wife Lilitha, son Samila (4) and daughter Sambesiwe (7).
Canon Melany Adonis is the new Sub-Dean and Chancellor of the Cathedral. May God bless Mzi, Melany, and their families in this new and exciting stage of their ministry!
Kutlwano Kepadisa appointed Cathedral Director of Music and Precentor
After the Parish Council had met on Wednesday evening, 27 January, for the last time in Andrew Hunter’s tenure as Dean, he announced the appointment of Kutlwano Kepadisa as Director of Music of the Cathedral. Kutlwano (Kepa) has been acting as Director of Music for some months, and was also in charge of the Cathedral music for two years from 2017-2019, after the departure of Dr Andrew-John Bethke. Trained initially by Dr Bethke as a Choir Intern, Kepa has worked tirelessly to develop his talents as a choir director. To judge by the outpouring of delighted congratulations on Facebook from parishioners and friends near and far, this appointment is extremely popular, and Kepa should be able to depend on support from the parish and beyond. At the live-streamed Eucharist service on Sunday 31 January, Dean Andrew announced that in addition to being Director of Music, he had appointed Kepa Cathedral Precentor. We congratulate him, and ask God’s blessing on him in this new field of work.
Kutlwano Kepadisa succeeds Cameron Luke, who joined us in April 2019. A brilliant organist, he brought many gifts and talents to the Cathedral and the choir. We thank him for all that he has contributed to the life of the Cathedral.
Cathedral choristers wanted!
The Imvumi (singers) section of the choir is looking for young singers to join our music ministry. Singers from Grade 5 to Grade 10 are encouraged to come try out for the choir. Interested singers/parents must contact Mr Kutlwano Kepadisa at 078 869 0880 (Whatsapp) to book their audition slot.
Farewell to Chris Mann, Artist-in-Residence
Chris Mann, poet and troubadour, one of the Cathedral’s Artists-in-Residence, died at home of cancer on 10 March. Over the years we have valued his poems, his songs, and those amazing collaborative multi-media shows produced for successive Spiritfests with his wife and fellow Artist-in-Residence Julia Skeen. His faith breathed easily through his art, an unforced, natural witness. We give thanks for his incalculable contribution to this city and this worshipping fellowship, mourn his passing, and pray for Julia and the family.
Chris Mann’s funeral took take place in the Cathedral on Friday 19 March at 10:30. Due to Covid-19 regulations, numbers present were limited to 100, but the service was streamed live, and recorded. It is still available to be watched here.
For more about Artists-in-Residence, and poems by Chris, see Our Artists page.
The Cathedral is open for visitors and private prayer during the Verger’s working hours, i.e. 9-12 and 1-3 on weekdays, and 9-12 on Saturdays. Please wear masks.
The Cathedral Office is open from 8—4:30 (closed for lunch 1—2). All visitors to the office are asked to wear masks, complete a register and sanitise their hands on entry. Sanitiser is provided.
South African Council of Churches Guidelines on Funerals in a time of pandemic
The SACC has produced a useful summary of the Government regulations covering funerals during the coronavirus pandemic. It can be accessed in poster form here.
This is part of the website which the SACC developed, which contains a range of useful, and accurate content on the Coronavirus pandemic. These can be downloaded and shared in all 11 languages. It also includes links to other useful resources.
Beyond general information on the virus, the SACC will provide information on the particular challenges faced by churches at this time. New content will be added regularly. It is work in progress and will improve with time.
Requests for information to be added on the site can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
Please share this resource widely.
Anglican Consultative Council passes Environment resolution
The Anglican Consultative Council, meeting in Hong Kong in May, passed an important resolution on the environment. The resolution recognised that there is a global climate emergency and requested that churches develop action plans and resources for sustainable living. Read more…