Religion: Political Predikants

The Dutch Reformed Church of South Africa (official title: Nederduits Gereformeerde Kerk) bares its teeth indiscriminately at foxtrotting, modern bathing suits and free speech. Along with its two smaller sister communions, it has denounced Christmas celebrations as "heathen rites" and castigated South Africans, especially women, for smoking and drinking. At its last synod the church elders condemned Freemasonry, the equality of the sexes and the U.N. Declaration of Human Rights (as defying the "pattern of inequality" which God created).

Politically, the church has not been so fastidious. Claiming two-thirds of South Africa's 1,500,000...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!