The History of The Diocese Of The Highveld
The Diocese of the Highveld was formed through a multiplication of the original Diocese of Johannesburg, which, in geographical terms, embraced the whole of the former Southern Transvaal Province of South Africa. On the Feast of the Epiphany, 6 January 1990, the Diocese of South Eastern Transvaal, now Highveld, came into being.
Bishop David Beetge was elected to lead the Diocese. This he has done with compassionate and wise leadership, through its founding years and one of the most painful and turbulent periods in our Country’s history. Bishop David Beetge lead our Diocese into new and exciting phases of growth and development. On the 27th of September 2008 Bishop David Beetge passed away after losing the battle to lymphoma cancer .
On the 25th of April 2009, Bishop David Bannerman was consecrated as Bishop of the Diocese.
The Diocese extends from the eastern edge of the Metropolis of Johannesburg, Gauteng Province, South Africa, to the borders of the Kingdom of Swaziland. Apart from the urban and industrial areas, forming what is known as the “East Rand”, in which most of our parishes are situated, much of the Diocese is rural farming land, falling within the Province of Mphumulanga. In this area, which comprises the Archdeaconries of Igwa East and West, apart from agriculture, limited additional employment is offered through three main industrial enterprises: Mining (coal and gold), Sasol 2 and 3 (coal to fuel conversion) and Electricity Generation (ESKOM).
Having said this the level of unemployment remains extremely high, with many of the men, both young and old, migrating to the larger cities in the hope of finding employment, This results in the population (and therefore membership of parishes) comprising mainly children and women, with the men returning only over the Christmas period. Sadly the problem of unemployment applies not only to the rural areas with significant levels of unemployment a reality in many parts of the East Rand area.
The Archdeaconries in the Diocese were also multiplied some time ago, enabling a far closer relationship between the Archdeacon and parishes and clergy. Our Cathedral of St Dunstan is situated in the city of Benoni, in which the Bishop is also resident. For more information on the cathedral why not log on to their website which is www.stdunstandscathedral.org.za
Our Diocese while diverse is one in which we are able to celebrate a real sense of unity. In this web site there are a number of pages that will help you get a clear idea of the many initiatives taking place at this time, ranging from Youth Ministry through to the comprehensive Social Responsibility Programmes being run at this time.
For further information please contact the Diocesan Office.