Who Are We?
Short History of the congregations
1.Milne Street congregation
(called St. Michael from 1985)
In 1985 a group of fourty members leaves St. Olav’s and forms the St. Michael’s Lutheran Church Congregation as a part of ELCSA, first worshipping in the chapel of the Norwegian Seamen’s Mission in Mansfield Rd.
In 1986 the church building in Moore Road burnt down and the congregation also worshipped at the Chapel in Mansfield Rd.
Shortly later these two congregations have to move out of the chapel in Mansfield Rd and now worship in the Lutheran Church in Milne Str and there in 1989 all merge to form one congregation – St. Michael’s Lutheran Church in 43 Milne Str.
In 1998 with the help of partners in Germany the church could be renovated and the outbuildings extended. A rededication service was held on 17th May 1998.
In 2010 a new wooden floor was installed, wooden benches were successively replaced and an audio-visual system was installed. In 2016 a wheelchair access ramp was constructed for
The Durban Corporation in co-operation with the government embarked on the establishment of major housing schemes in the outskirts of the city. They started in Lamontville in 1934 and in Chesterville in 1946. Already in 1936 the church in Lamontville was built – also as a daughter-congregation to Milne Street. In 2009 major renovations and extension work to the church building, including two extra rooms and a toilet block were completed.
A mission outreach in Chesterville was embarked on. It was planned to build a church, but a site could not be obtained. For many years the congregation worshipped in a corrugated iron building, but were eventually given notice by the owners. Subsequently worship continued in an incomplete workshop building for some years. Thereafter the Chesterville congregation used classrooms in the Chesterville High School for the following years. The managed to secure a site at the corner of Mbusweni Rd and 106830
Str. in Chesterville and had building plans passed by the municipality. They started building and completed phase 1 in 2010, from which date onwards the congregation moved from Chesterville High School started using the church building.
On Easter Sunday of 1959 an English service was started in Moore Road Lutheran church for “Coloured” families who had been removed from their homes in Zululand. It was a humble beginning, but the few that were present had a missionary zeal.
In the 1960’s many of the “Coloureds” were moved into Austerville and later the area was extended to include the whole of Wentworth. The churches were given space for worship in a long barrack in Goschen Rd. There were 13 church denominations under the same roof. A task group was appointed to recommend a way forward for the work of the Lutheran Church among the “Coloureds”. They came up with a suggestion that the Lutheran families could join other churches in the area, such as the Methodist or the Anglicans. Dean P. B. Mhlungu, later bishop, was strongly opposed to this suggestion. He claimed that if the Lutheran Church shall be relevant in the South African situation, it must be a church for all population groups. The work continued. When the churches had to move out of the barracks in Goschen Road, the Lutheran congregation could, after a short interim in the church building of the Reformed Church, move to the new church in Happy Valley, Ogle Road in 1980.
This relatively young congregation started using classrooms of a nearby high school as a worship site. Through successfull fundraising they managed to buy a wood and iron church building from a catholic congregation on Sarnia Road, where they are worshipping now.
Othandweni was founded in 2002 where they met in a classroom of the New Forest High School. Now they worship at Khulangolwazi Special School.
The Hermannsburg Mission set up a work in Cator Manor and built a small church building of corrugated iron – at the corner of then Cato Manor and Old Main Rd. Later this was replaced by a solid church building, which eventually burnt to the ground. In 1960 the municipality decided to clear the slum area of Cato Manor and the church site was lost. The Cato Crest Congregation was newly formed by members formerly attending St.Michael’s and met in school classrooms. Since 2009 a room is used for services in the former SPCA Building – now an interim shelter for people from the informal settlement area in Cato Crest, which is being converted to a low-cost housing project. In 2019 the Cato Crest Preaching Place managed to secure a small site a few hundred meters further up the SPCA Access Road where a simple wood and tin structure was erected and
church services started to be held.