Diocese of Kimberley and Kuruman

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The Diocese of Kimberley and Kuruman is a diocese in the Anglican Church of Southern Africa, and encompasses the area around Kimberley and Kuruman and overlaps the Northern Cape Province and North West Province of South Africa. It is presided over by the Bishop of Kimberley and Kuruman, currently Ossie Swartz. The seat of the Bishop of Kimberley and Kuruman is at St Cyprian's Cathedral, Kimberley. There have so far been 12 bishops of the See, though one of these served for two different periods of time.

Formation of the diocese[edit]

The Anglican presence on the Diamond Fields and in Kimberley's hinterland, from the early 1870s, was at first administered from Bloemfontein, initially under Allan Webb, the oldest parish here being St Mary's, Barkly West. By the early 1890s, however, there was a feeling in some quarters that the Diocese of Bloemfontein was too big and there were proposals for the formation of a separate bishopric with its seat in Kimberley. But in the event the bishops decided upon establishing the missionary Diocese of Mashonaland instead – an area also up until then administered from Bloemfontein.

From 1907 to 1910 motions were passed and planning and fund-raising initiatives were being conducted in earnest towards founding a new Diocese of Kimberley. These included the "Million Shillings Fund" launched by Arthur Chandler, Bishop of Bloemfontein, in London on 2 February 1909. It was hoped that all would be in place so that the coming into being of the new Diocese would coincide with the establishment of Union in South Africa in 1910. However it was not before July 1911 that all was ready and a formal resolution could be proposed, as it was at a meeting in the Kimberley Town Hall, that ‘the western portion of the Diocese of Bloemfontein be constituted a new and separate Diocese with Kimberley as its Cathedral Town’[1] – to which the Episcopal Synod, meeting in Maritzburg, gave its final consent in the form of a mandate dated 11 October 1911. The elective assembly for the choosing of a bishop for the new diocese was held in Kimberley on 13 December 1911, at which Wilfrid Gore Browne, Dean of Pretoria, was the unanimous choice.[2] Gore Browne was consecrated in the Bloemfontein Cathedral on 29 June 1912. He was enthroned the following day as bishop of Kimberley and Kuruman, at St Cyprian's Cathedral.

Geographical extent[edit]

The Diocese of Kimberley and Kuruman has not been constant in extent and at times less than exactly defined. Taking over the western side of the Diocese of Boemfontein (now "of the Free State"), it also included some of the sparsely populated interior extremities of the Dioceses of Cape Town and of Grahamstown. The southern half of Bechuanaland Protectorate was added om 1915 and remained part of "K&K" (as Kimberley and Kuruman is often called) until Botswana's independence in 1966. This history flavoured liturgical usage there, which still resembles the style more of the South African Prayer Book than the Central African Prayer Book.[3] The 1952 diocesan synod was concerned to establish the boundaries of parishes; noting also a lack of clarity on "where is the Diocese" – "The Bishop called attention ... to the fact that certain places where at present the Diocese has Clergymen at work are not technically in the Diocese."[4]


Tenure Incumbent Notes
1912 to 1928 Wilfrid Gore Browne (1859–1928)
1928 to 1943 Theodore Sumner Gibson (1885–1953)
1943 to 1951 John Hunter (1897–1965)
1951 to 1960 John Boys (1900–1972)
1961 to 1965 Philip William Wheeldon (1913–1992)
1965 to 1967 Clarence Edward Crowther (b 1929)
1968 to 1976 Philip William Wheeldon (2nd spell) (Ibid)
1976 to 1983 Graham Charles Chadwick (1923–2007)
1983 to 1991 George Alfred Swartz (1928–2006)
1991 to 1996 Winston Njongonkulu Ndungane (b 1941)
1996 to 2006 Itumeleng Baldwin Moseki (b 1944)
2007 to present Oswald Swartz (b 1953–)

Notable clergy and people[edit]

Besides the bishops of the see (above) and the Deans of Kimberley (see also the early Rectors of St Cyprian's), notable clergy and people of the diocese have included: The so-called "Big Three" pioneer missionary priests of the diocese, W.H.R. Bevan of Phokwane; George Mervyn Lawson, archdeacon of Griqualand West; and Frederick William Peasley of Bothithong; Henrietta Stockdale, a sister of the Community of St Michael and All Angels; Levi Kraai, ordained by Gore-Browne in 1913; J. W. Mogg, who served the diocese from 1915 to 1945; S.W. Wade, an archdeacon; Joseph Thekiso, an archdeacon; Theo Naledi, afterwards Bishop of Botswana; Richard Stanley Cutts, an archdeacon, afterwards Dean of Salisbury and later the bishop of Buenos Aires; Alan Butler, latterly director of the Kuruman Moffat Mission; George Pressly; John William Salt, afterwards dean of Eshowe and bishop of St Helena; Kimberley-born Brian Marajh, consecrated as bishop of George.

Current archdeaconries and parishes[edit]

Some of the parishes in the diocese date back to the beginnings of Anglican work on the Diamond Fields and in Kimberley's hinterland, for example St Mary's, Barkly West and the Cathedral Parish of St Cyprian. They have multiplied in number, various parishes being subdivided or consolidated through time. It follows that boundaries have not been unchanging. The archdeaconry structure has been even more dynamic, responding to the needs of the day at different periods. In 2010 an experimental division between north and south was replaced when the current archdeaconries of the Molopo, the Kgalagadi and the Karoo, additional to the Cathedral Archdeaconry, were created.


Archdeaconry of the Karoo[edit]

  • St Alban's, De Beers
  • All Saints, Homevale
  • St Barnabas, Floors
  • St James, Galeshewe
  • St Matthew's, Barkly Road
  • St Augustine's, West End
  • St Mary's, Barkly West – the oldest Parish Church in the Diocese
  • St Mary Magdalene, Ritchie
  • St Paul's, Vergenoeg
  • St Peter's, Greenpoint
  • St Francis, Roodepan
  • St Thomas, De Aar
  • Good Shepherd, Nonzwakazi
  • St Martin's & Annunciation, Douglas
  • St Andrew's, Douglas
  • St Barnabas, Britstown
  • St Andrew's, Philipstown
  • St Matthew's, Richmond

Archdeaconry of the Molopo[edit]

  • St John's, Mafikeng
  • All Saints, Montshiwa
  • Resurrection, Mmabatho
  • Transfiguration, Setlagole
  • St Michael and All Angels, Lomanyaneng
  • St Stephen's, Vryburg
  • St Peter's, Ganyesa
  • Holy Cross, Pudimong
  • St Philip's, Huhudi
  • St Chad's, Taung
  • All Saints, Pampierstad
  • St Mary's, Matalong
  • Hartsvaal Parish

Several of these parishes have numerous outstations

Archdeaconry of the Kgalagadi[edit]

  • St Matthew's, Oranjekruin
  • All Saints, Paballelo
  • St Andrew's, Prieska
  • St Anne's, Niekerkshoop
  • St Paul's, Marydale
  • St Philip's, Boegoeberg
  • St Francis, Manyeding
  • St Mary-le-Bourne, Kuruman
  • St Peter's Wrenchville
  • St Laurence, Danielskuil
  • St Michael and All Angels, Batlharos
  • St Paul's, Mothibistad
  • St John's, Bothithong
  • St Winfred, Maruping
  • St Monica, Tsineng

Several of these parishes have numerous outstations

Coat of arms[edit]

The diocese assumed arms at the time of its inception, and had them granted by the College of Arms in 1953 : Per pale Argent and Sable, a cross potent counterchanged within a bordure Azure charged with eleven lozenges of the first.[6]

Relationship with Oxford[edit]

The diocese has a link partnership with the Diocese of Oxford, established in 1993.[7] Visits by John Pritchard, Bishop of Oxford, to Kimberley and Kuruman in 2008 and 2010 and by Ossie Swartz to Lambeth Palace (and Oxford) in 2008, and by other senior clergy and people, have strengthened the link with its focus on HIV/Aids and other key projects.[8]


  1. ^ Roberts, Brian (1976). Kimberley: Turbulent City. Historical Society of Kimberley and the Northern Cape. p. 356. ISBN 978-0-949968-62-3 – via David Philip.
  2. ^ Lewis, C; Edwards, G.E. (1934). Historical records of the Church of the Province of South Africa. London: S.P.C.K. p. 515.
  3. ^ Hefling, Charles; Shattuck, Cynthia, eds. (2006). The Oxford Guide to The Book of Common Prayer: A Worldwide Survey. Oxford University Press. p. 310. ISBN 978-0-19-972389-8.
  4. ^ Highway 14(4) Oct 1952.
  5. ^ Aiken, Simon (8 May 2011). "The Archdeacon's Charge: The Very Revd Fr Simon Aiken in his capacity as Archdeacon of the Karoo, St Cyprian's Cathedral,". stcypskimberley.blogspot.com. Retrieved 24 June 2018.
  6. ^ Brownell, F. G. (2002). Heraldry in the Church of the Province of Southern Africa, 1847–2000: Coats of Arms of the Dioceses, Collegiate and Parish Churches, and the Order of Ethiopia. Heraldsholme CC. p. 48. ISBN 978-0-620-28606-0.
  7. ^ "Oxford – K&K Link". Archived from the original on 21 February 2013.
  8. ^ "The Oxford Kimberley & Kuruman Diocesan Link: Guidance for Parishes" (PDF). deddington.org.uk. n.d. Retrieved 24 June 2018.