Zion City at Moria

The largest Christian gathering in South Africa happens twice a year at Zion City, Moria near Polokwane

Limpopo Tourist AttractionsThe Zion City at Moria

The largest Christian gathering in South Africa happens twice a year at Zion City, Moria near Polokwane at Easter and again for the September festival. The Zion Christian Churchís headquarters are at Zion City Moria (not to be confused with the underground city, mines and connected tunnels that run through the Misty Mountains in Tolkienís Lord of the Rings).

Where? Zion City at Moria, Polokwane, Limpopo

Overnight? See Polokwane accommodation, in Limpopo

This Moria, about 25 kilometres east of Polokwane, is the seat of the Zion Christian church - an entirely black denomination with over four million members formed in 1910 by Engenas Lekganyane - an indigenous church to Africa that is one of the only churches not established by evangelists from abroad.

The worship of the lord over Easter is zealously attended, and members use whatever mode of transport they can find to get there - some come by donkey cart, others by bicycle, bus, car, taxi, train and on foot. Spoornet apparently runs a number of 20-coach high speed passenger trains the 380 kilometres between Johannesburg and Polokwane, whilst the church hires thousands of 100-passenger buses for its members.

This is the time of year to avoid the N1 and the R101 from Johannesburg, as they are congested with participants who spend three days worshipping in the open, as the building at Moria is ill-equipped to cope with the numbers of people that swell its ranks.

The Star of David is the symbol of the ZCC and the two congregations that make up the church are today led by the grandsons of its founder - Barnabas Lekganyane and Saint Engenas Lekganyane. The ZCC is characterised by the emphasis it places on faith healing, purification rites, dancing, night communion, river baptism, the holy spirit, taboos and prophesying.

The ZCC has members in every country in Africa, and in most countries of the Middle East.

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