Our Church History
During September 1949, Reverend Raymond and Christine McLewin, arrived in Port Shepstone as young missionaries from the USA and began working among the Indian communities in Albersville, Marburg, Izotsha and Oatlands areas. Within 2 years Shiloh Evangelical Church in Albersville was established.
Due to the phenomenal growth of converts in Izotsha, Oatlands and Marbugh, Reverend McLewin established Salem Church in 1959. They met in a rented double garage where upon Reverend McLewin challenged this young Church to give sacrificially towards the purchase of a property and the erection of a building. He called the project “SHOW YOUR FAITH”.
The members gave sacrificially, even to the extent of women selling their jewelry and sowing that seed into the Church. They raised the required finances, purchased the property and erected the building in 1 year.
On the 28th August 1960, the building was officially opened by Reverend McLewin. At the end of 1960 Reverend McLewin left to Furlough and handed the work to Elder John Stephen.
Elder John Stephen was the first Elder, assisted by a dedicated team of Deacons, Mr Perumal Naidoo, Mr LA Francis, Mr Eric Moodley, Mr Sam Moodley, Mr Manikum Moodley and Mr Andrew Stephen.
Reverend John Peter was the first full time Pastor to serve the congregation in 1969. The success of this ministry was based on sacrifice, dedication, commitment and most importantly a passion for God, that has been the hallmark of this ministry over 57 years.
The ministry of Salem focused on open air evangelism, outreach to the unsaved, financial support to several mission organisations and Pastors, a Bible teaching and discipleship programs, youth and children’s camps.
The history of Salem Evangelical Church is preserved with the hope of inspiring our present and future congregations. It is our prayer that future generations will preserve the ideas and dreams of those who labored for so long, enduring many hardships, while working in this area of the Lord’s Vineyard.
Certainly, God has been our shield and strength. he has guided us with his counsel, blessed us by his providence and inspired us by His spirit.