Groote Kerk Church-SA’s Oldest Church
When the Dutch East India Company sent Jan van Riebeeck to start a Dutch settlement at the Cape of Good Hope in 1652, most of the company’s employees were members of the Nederlandse Hervormde Kerk. At first there were no ordained ministers from the church in the Netherlands, to exercise pastoral care, but only a sick comforter. The first minister, Johan van Arckel arrived in 1665, and a consistory was formed but was still subject to the control of the classis in Amsterdam.
It is a matter of great pleasure to inform you that Gurudwara Sahib, the first Sikh Temple in Cape Town, formally started functioning on Sunday, 28th Feb., 2010. The Sikh and Punjabi community in and around Cape Town always cherished the dream of establishing a Gurudwara in Cape Town not only for the resident community, but also for the sizable Punjabi tourists visiting Cape Town every year. Since the community is quite miniscule, it was difficult to acquire land and get all the paperwork done to establish the Gurudwara Sahib. However, with the help of the Management of the ‘Radha Krishna Temple, Jeram Avenue, Rylands Estate, Cape Town, and the Management of Gurudwara Sahib, Johannesburg, the dream of the community is turning into a reality.
The Auwal Mosque is the first and oldest mosque built in South Africa. This is evident according to very strong oral tradition which also confirms that Imam Abdullah Kadi Abdus Salaam also known as Tuan Guru, who was the first Imam at this Mosque.
The Auwal mosque came into existence in 1798 during the first British occupation of the Cape of Good Hope and was the main religious instituting during the years 1804 until 1850. This mosque is also the first to have practiced most of the Cape Muslim traditions.