From Cabazi to Bruma: Purity Malinga’s Rise to Presiding Bishop of the MCSA

Keywords: Purity Malinga, Methodist Church of Southern Africa (MCSA), Presiding Bishop


This article is an appraisal of Presiding Bishop Purity Malinga’s journey from her rural upbringing in Cabazi, Ixopo in KwaZulu-Natal to the helm of Methodism in Bruma Lake in Johannesburg, headquarters of the Methodist Church of Southern Africa (MCSA). The path of Purity Malinga to Presiding Bishop of the biggest mainline denomination in Southern Africa is explored from a perspective that her nomination breaks the 212-year-old glass ceiling that limited women’s rise into leadership in the MCSA. The aim of the paper is to present facts about the life, qualities and achievements that enabled her ascendance to the leadership of the MCSA. The major conclusions of the study indicate that her rise to the echelons of the church was because of a combination of factors, namely her leadership capabilities, theological acumen, progressive nurture of Methodism and the crisis caused by a leaked conversation between Rev. Vukile Mehana and Raymond Sibanga on December 28, 2018.