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Pearston Dutch Reformed Church

Pearston Dutch Reformed Church

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The Pearston Dutch Reformed Church in the village of Pearston near Somerset East was founded in 1859 with the town being established shortly after. Since 1850 locals have been receiving communion under a big pear tree by Rev John Pears who had to travel the 48km from Somerset East.
At the time of the foundation of the church in 1859, it was the 76th congregation in the Dutch Reformed Church and the 18th in what would later become the Synod of the Eastern Cape. The congregation was named Pearston after Rev Pears, and not after the pear tree that played such a big role in the early days before the church was built. The first minister of the church was Rev C.T. Muller from Jansenville. He was on 7 September 1861, almost two years after the founding of the congregation. In 1865 construction was started on a new church, but due to trouble in the congregation (dispute between two strong parties) the work was stopped when the walls already reached a certain height. This long-lasting feud only subsided during the tenure of the fourth minister, Rev C.H. Radloff. The church was finally completed and consecrated without debt on 30 June 1887, 22 years after the building work began.
Through the tireless work of Rev Radloff a tower was added to the church and unveiled in September 1899.