#TheGodProject: A Catholic Church in Rosebank

A few months ago, my friend Ang at JOZI.REDISCOVERED asked me to partner with her on a blogging project. It would be called #TheGodProject, and the two of us would go around Joburg exploring different places of worship. Ang would interview the various religious leaders and write about the services, and I would take photos.

I’ve always been fascinated by religion so I jumped right on board. It took us a few months to get the project off the ground but we’re finally ready with our first post, about the Rosebank Church of the Immaculate Conception.

Church-outside

The Rosebank Catholic Church, at 16 Keyes Avenue in Rosebank.

I’m not going to say much about the church because the whole point is for you to go read Ang’s post. But I will say that this was my first time visiting this church, which is about 80 years old, and I found it incredibly beautiful and interesting. Here is my collection of photos from the Sunday evening service that we attended.

Virgin-Mary-and-ivy

A statue of the Virgin Mary in the church’s courtyard.

Station-of-the-Cross

A window inside the church illustrating one of the 14 Stations of the Cross (religious images of Jesus Christ’s crucifixion). Interestingly, this is the second time this year that I’ve mentioned the 14 Stations of the Cross in a blog post.

Full-church

A full house for the Sunday evening service. It’s technically called the “Youth Service”, although the parishioners were all different ages.

Deacon

Brent Chalmers, one of the deacons of the Church of the Immaculate Conception. Ang will have a lot more to say about Brent in her post. He looks stern in this picture but is actually a very friendly guy.

Crucifix

The cross above the pulpit. Brent told us that the reddish lines on the marble below Christ’s hands just appeared there over the years, and no one knows how. 

Virgin-Mary-and-candles

The section of the church where parishioners go to light prayer candles.

Maxine

Maxine, a cute young girl who played guitar in the “youth band”. Maxine was the only youth in the band though. All of the other musicians ranged between 30 and 80.

At the end of the service I approached the priest, Tony Nunes, to thank him for letting Ang and I attend the service and take photos.

“It was a pleasure,” said Father Tony. “And what is your religious faith?”

A logical question, coming from a priest. But I had to pause for a panicky second, thinking of an answer.

“I’m Jewish,” I said.

This answer is 100% correct. My mother is Jewish so technically I’m Jewish too, even though I know next to nothing about Judaism. I was also baptised Episcopalian when I was a baby, attended a Methodist Sunday school as a kid, and now don’t follow any particular religion. But I didn’t want to get into all of that with Father Tony.

“Ah, I’ve just returned from Israel!” exclaimed Father Tony. “Amazing place.”

I smiled and nodded, praying (pardon the pun) that Father Tony wouldn’t ask me if I’ve ever been to the Wailing Wall or which shul I attend in Joburg.

“It was great meeting you, Father,” I said, backing away. “Thanks so much.”

“Of course,” said Father. “Shalom!”

#TheGodProject is going to be interesting.

Church-after-service

Thanks to the Church of the Immaculate Conception.

Follow #TheGodProject on 2Summers and on JOZI.REDISCOVERED.

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10 Comments

  • Reply Ang Lloyd August 7, 2015 at 10:15 am

    Haha, I forgot about your interaction with the priest!

  • Reply #TheGodProject – Rosebank Catholic Church | JOZI.REDISCOVERED August 7, 2015 at 10:17 am

    […] For more images from 2Summers, go see her post here. […]

  • Reply Expatorama August 7, 2015 at 2:41 pm

    Lovely photos and what an interesting project. You could set up a nifty side line in wedding photography! Cheers.

  • Reply laurent domergue August 7, 2015 at 4:00 pm

    Catholic Church is Pop, with his new God…e project …!!! Sorry , only a Pun, i’m a Joker …!!!

  • Reply mvschulze August 7, 2015 at 4:38 pm

    Interesting project. Your beautiful images captre the essence of an active house of worship, and then some. I am basically an observer, curious and sometimes puzzled, of organized religions. Their impact on civilization is undeniable, but the diversity of beliefs leads to speculation as to their credibility, individual fulfilment aside.
    Thanks for the view, and your thoughts. I also enjoyed reading Ang’s first installment. M 🙂

  • Reply Lani August 8, 2015 at 7:26 am

    What a great idea. I loved my World Religion class in community college. It is what led me to ultimately major in Anthropology. Looking forward to this great project! And get those hard religious answers ready, Heather! 😛

  • Reply Sine August 10, 2015 at 7:04 am

    Great pictures, love the project, and glad to have learned something new about you. So cool you’re Jewish!

    • Reply 2summers August 13, 2015 at 12:01 pm

      Yes, although I’m a very bad Jew! I blame my mother.

      • Reply Sine August 13, 2015 at 2:07 pm

        We ALL blame our mothers:-) Such payback time now that I see my kids doing that to me!

  • Reply #TheGodProject – Rosebank Catholic Church | JOZI. REDISCOVERED August 11, 2016 at 4:49 pm

    […] For more images from 2Summers, go see her post here. […]

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