The research was conducted in two vast Dioceses, which are the Diocese of Natal, and the Diocese of Zululand (“Dioceses”) as the area of focus. Since the Anglican Church of Southern Africa was initiated by the early White Missionaries and governed from England for centuries, the research is investigating the advancement of transformation in both the Diocese of Natal and Diocese of Zululand respectively. The researcher acknowledges that transformation has taken place in most of the Dioceses at the Episcopal level in the Anglican Church of Southern Africa; however, cross-cultural appointments at the parish level have stagnated over the years.
Within the Dioceses, which are the subject matter of the research. The main questions are:
What causes the English-speaking clergy not to be appointed to minister in IsiZulu or IsiXhosa speaking parishes, alternatively what causes certain IsiZulu or IsiXhosa speaking clergy not to be appointed into English speaking parishes?
Why is the placement of the Black clergy in predominantly English speaking parishes not getting the same support and privileges as their White counterparts when they are placed in English speaking parishes?
Why are the Black congregants present when they are invited to attend conferences, which are hosted in the suburban areas, yet the majority of White, Indian, and Coloured congregants are reluctant to attend conferences, which are hosted in the townships or rural areas?
In terms of the election of Bishops, they are democratically elected but the question remains as to why an Indigenous Black Bishop has never been elected in the Diocese of Natal?
The aim of the study is to reflect on issues of racism and separate development at the parish level when it comes to the appointments of clergy to various parishes. The research is also investigating the advancement of racial transformation at the Episcopal level when it comes to the election of bishops in the Dioceses. Through this investigation, the researcher is pastorally seeking ways to transform and advance change in parishes, which have already started at the Episcopal level to a greater or lesser extent. The study will endeavour to investigate whether it is still a struggle or not to appoint clergy across racial lines freely and to strike the balance to accommodate different cultures and language in various parishes. The area of focus is the Diocese of Natal and Zululand limiting the investigation from the years around 1960 to the present.
Since the researcher is doing a combination of interviews and questionnaires, mixed methodology is applied in this study. The data will be collected using a combination of techniques of collecting and analysing quantitative and qualitative data. At the end of the research, there will be quantification as to the numbers of bishops and clergy that participated in the study. In addition, there will be qualification of responses of both bishops and clergy in different sections of the questionnaire.
After comparison of the Diocese of Natal and the Diocese of Zululand about transformation, one realised that as much as the White English speaking missionaries from England initiated these dioceses but they are distinctly different when it comes to appointments to various parishes. The Diocese of Natal is multiracial and multicultural in nature but the Diocese of Zululand is partly homogeneous in nature with a sprinkle of few parishes, which were originally White English speaking parishes, which are predominantly black now.
The issue of multiracial and multicultural challenge is not so much evident in the Diocese of Zululand in comparison to the Diocese of Natal. In the Diocese of Zululand, most of the Parishes, which were originally White English speaking Parishes, are now having the foreign Nationals as their Rectors. Whereas in the Diocese of Natal the appointment of clergy is one sided. The White, Indian, Coloured English speaking clergy are not appointed to Zulu speaking township and rural parishes but on the other hand black Zulu speaking clergy are appointed to English speaking parishes
The study confirms the hypothesis that the denomination particularly the Anglican Church of Southern Africa has transformed at the Episcopal level but it is slow when it comes to the parish level. Some of the recommendations are motivating for the linguistic courses to be offered in theological colleges. All the allowances given to the clergy by parishes to be centralised to equate the package that is offered to the clergy to alleviate the resistance of clergy accepting to serve in poor parishes. The study also shows that there must be a consultation between the clergy and the bishops and the receiving parish before the clergy person is appointed. For a good transition towards transformation, there must be negotiation. In those negotiations, all the parties involved must be prepared to compromise to reach a satisfactory resolution. The clergy should be familiarised with different church traditions, worship styles and spiritualties prevalent in each Diocese. Support should be given to clergy in overcoming prejudice and discrimination in their areas of race, gender and human sexuality. The system of appointment of clergy should be reviewed and the drawing up of parish profiles should be enforced to enable the parish and the clergy to assess the suitability of cleric to the parish.