Worshippers commemorate St Manche Masemola
Over 5 000 congregants and members of the clergy of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa recently gathered at the grave of Manche Masemola in the deep rural parts of Ga-Marishane Village to commemorate and celebrate her life.
Masemola is one of ten 20th century martyrs whose statues grace the Great West Door of Westminster Abbey in London.
Koketso Masrishane, member of the Ga-Marishane congregation said the church’s Calendar of Saints marks the annual commemoration of the life and sainthood of Masemola on the first Sunday of February.
Elaborating on the background of the event, Marishane stated that Anglicans began to visit the gravesite from as early 1935.
Masemola, a teenager at the time of her death on 2 February 1928, was murdered by her parents for going against their will and preparing to be baptised in the Anglican Church. She was declared a martyr within ten years of her death. Her mother converted to Christianity in 1969 and was baptised.
“In Westminster Abbey a structure dating to at least the 15th century with ten empty niches set among sculptures of saints and allegorical figures like Mary, Truth, Righteousness and Peace, was designated to honour martyrs of the 20th century. So far, only two Africans are recognised and acknowledged there, Masemola and Janani Luwum, Archbishop of the Church of Uganda.
Source: Polokwane Observer.Story: Herbert Rachuene
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