Architectural gem opened

2010-09-06 00:00

THEY wanted to create a place of beauty which would make people think of God just by looking at the architecture and its landscape.

The Seth Mokitimi Methodist Seminary (SMMS) in Epworth was officially opened and dedicated on Saturday. Guests of honour included the former presiding Bishop of the Methodist Church in Southern Africa, Mvume Dandala, and family of the late Seth Mokitimi, who was the first black president of the Methodist Church in Southern Africa.

The R65 million project boasts a chapel with seating for 270 people, a lecture complex housing four major lecture theatres, a prayer garden, a number of seminar rooms, an open amphitheatre with a towering cross, an administration building, a cafeteria and a library, both open to the public. But by far its biggest attraction are the chapel doors, each weighing one- and-a-half tons. They are apparently the biggest on any building in South Africa.

But more than the outer beauty, said the Reverend Professor Peter Storey, the former bishop of the Methodist church in South Africa, the church wanted to create a place where it could shape the future of South Africa through moral and spiritual leadership, which the country so desperately needs.

“What you see here is a culmination of a dream held by the Methodist church for many years, but which needed people of passion and action to fulfil. For the past three years I have worked with teams who have rallied together to work on funding, academics, governance, student life, as well as the land and buildings for us to have all this today.”

“The campus costs over R60 million and I’m proud to tell you that we are only about R3 million short of that sum. About 97% of the money was raised by the Methodist people and well-wishers here in South Africa. Only three percent came from gifts overseas.”

The Witness understands the outstanding R3 million has already been pledged.

The campus offers three programmes for the 77 seminarians enrolled this year. The president of the seminary, the Reverend Dr Ross Olivier, said they wanted to be known for quality and service to their community, something they are already practising.

Members of the public can rent conference and seminar rooms and make use of the book and thrift shops.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.