CHERUBIM AND SERAPHIM CHURCH.The Holy Order of the Cherubim and Seraphim Church has its UK headquarters at Earlham Hall, 175 Earlham Grove, Forest Gate. Arriving in the 1970s it is one of the earliest African congregations to settle in Newham.
As the first African instituted church it was established among the Yoruba people in Western Nigeria in 1925. The 'Aladura' or African indigenous tradition combine teaching and practices learned from western missionaries with elements of traditional African traditions
In Forest Gate the church is led by Pastors and Apostles, worships in distinctive white robes and emphasises prayer-including night vigils.
They worship in buildings with a long musical and faith background. Earlham Hall was originally built in 1879 by John Curwen, the Congregational minister, for his Tonic-Sol-Fa College. The Metropolitan Academy of Music followed on from 1906 until World War II, and then London Co-operative offices preceded the arrival of the Cherubim and Seraphim congregation in the 1970s.
Other denominations with independent African origins known in Newham include the CELESTIAL CHURCH OF CHRIST 776a Romford Road, Manor Park who took over the Little Eye Club in 1992 and the KIMBANGUISTE CHURCH made up of Zairean refugees that used the Swift Centre in Plaistow in the 1990s.
Colin Marchant Faith flows in Newham project 2011. Picture by Matthew Crisp