Good Hope and Unity MCC Collection

Span Dates: 1994-1998
Bulk Dates:
Volume: 5 cubic feet


The collection consists of Graeme Reid's research material and includes HUMCC documents, flyers, posters, periodicals, Reid's research documents and notes, and a large number of sound and video recordings and photographs. Includes a copy of Reid's MA thesis: “Above the Skyline: Integrating African, Christian and Gay or Lesbian Identities in a South African Church Community.”

Hist/Bio Note

The Hope and Unity Metropolitan Community Church (HUMCC) was established in 1994 by Rev. Tsietsi Thandekiso and was an affiliate of the Universal Fellowship of the Metropolitan Community Churches. The HUMMC’s first home was a rented room on the second floor of the Harrison Reef Hotel in Hillbrow, the same building which housed the infamous gay bar The Skyline. For 18 years the HUMCC served as spiritual home to those seeking guidance in reconciling their sexual identity with their relationships with God. The HUMCC blessed many same-sex unions, both before and after Civil Union marriages were legalised in 2006. As well as being a church, the HUMCC was also a social centre and gathering point for the (mostly) black LGBTI community. During the mid to late 1990s the HUMCC held many social events, including the annual Mr. & Miss HUMCC pageants. Through a detailed ethnographic study of the HUMCC during the period 1995 to 1997, MA student Graeme Reid set out to demonstrate how a particular South African church community created the possibility of an integrated cultural identity for gay and lesbian Christians in an African context. His research focuses on healing rituals, the language of church services, gender, gender identity, kinship relations, parents of lesbian and gay church members, proselytizing and the significance of the Holy Spirit in the life of the church community. The main research method was participant observation, complemented by household surveys, individual interviews and focus group discussions. (Information adapted from Reid's MA thesis abstract).

Finding Aid

An inventory is available on request.


This collection is held at Gay and Lesbian Archives PO Box 31719, Braamfontein, 2017, Johannesburg, South Africa


Africa | Pentecostal | MCC | South Africa