SA church board finds there is a “case to answer” for a priest accused of raping another priest


The report of the Board of Preliminary Enquiry finds there is a case to answer.

The Board of Preliminary Enquiry (BPE) appointed by the Anglican Church of South Africa (ACSA) to investigate the alleged rape of the Reverend June Dolley-Major by the Reverend Melvin Booysen has established there is a case to answer.

The case will be heard by a Diocesan Tribunal in public sessions as set out in Church law (Canons) in around mid-May 2021, in order to allow for the confirmation of the lay and clerical members of the tribunal by Rev Major and Rev Booysen. The Archbishop has appointed as President of the Tribunal one of the retired Bishops of the Church, Bishop Emeritus Peter Lee.

As soon as the tribunal date has been confirmed, the ACSA will publish its date and venue and joining instructions in line with the prevailing COVID-19 restrictions. An option to join the tribunal virtually will also be made available.

At the end of the hearings the tribunal will issue a judgement within 21 days. The judgement may be the subject of a further appeal. By choosing to pursue the case under Church law (Canons) this does not prevent either Rev Dolley-Major or Rev Booysen from pursuing this matter in the criminal courts in the future, if they wish to do so.

For further details of the process followed to date by the ACSA please see our media statement of 24 March 2021 which can be viewed here

We assure all of those involved on both sides of this case of our prayers, pastoral support and long-standing commitment as we seek guidance and truth in this matter.

We will continue to communicate progress on this matter.