Rev Purity Malinga inducted as first female bishop of Methodist Church of Southern Africa
Reverend Purity Malinga has been inducted as the first female bishop of the Methodist Church of Southern Africa.
Malinga was inducted at Beula Park International Conference Centre in Germiston on Sunday. She takes over from Bishop Ziphokuhle Siwa.
She was elected in May through a ballot in which the 12 synods of the church cast their votes.
Methodist priests Dix Sibeko and Jenni Samdaan welcomed Malinga’s election as bishop in an interview with the SABC.
"We were overwhelmed when we heard her name is on top. We were singing zajiki’izinto [things are changing]," said Sibeko.
"I’m over the moon. She is the right person for the church, for this time. She got the votes. There was no doubt about it, which gives us the feeling the whole church is behind her," said Samdaan.
"We are not saying patriarchy is dead because we still have a long way to go," she added.
Samdaan said Malinga is the 100th bishop of the Methodist Church of Southern Africa.
"She’s the first female presiding bishop. There had been 99 men before her. For her to be chosen to lead us is wonderful."
Sibeko and Samdaan described Malinga as “strong” woman.
"She’s proved herself. We need men and women to work together. We don’t need to be at loggerheads. Reverend Purity is about empowering women," said Samdaan.