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- Catholic church of St. Joseph, Cape Town.
Catholic church of St. Joseph, Cape Town.
On the hillside at Kommetjie a small church with a bell tower. This is the Catholic church of St Joseph, built by a devoted wife in honour of her husband. Guiseppe Rubbi came to South Africa from Italy at the turn of the century as a humble carpenter but struggled on to become one of the foremost builders in Cape Town. The Old Mutual building in Darling Street, which in its day was considered outstanding, was built by him. He owned one of the first four holiday homes in Kommetjie and loved to walk in the mountains behind. He expressed the wish that he could be buried there as the view was reminiscent of his birthplace, Marostica. When he died in 1946, Mrs Rubbi bought the piece of land where he used to sit and admire the view and had a tomb and ventilated vault erected there. She persuaded Bishop O'Reilly to allow her to build a chapel in memory of her husband. In 1948 Mr Garnelli, the nephew who had inherited the family business, built this chapel. No expense was spared. On the ceiling are three paintings in the style of an Italian church, with different marbles imported from the Alps and Vicenza for the altar and the floor. Around the walls are tablets depicting the 14 Stations of the Cross, and a mosaic of the Holy Mother and Child. When the church was completed, Mrs Rubbi arranged for a Salesian father to conduct a service there once a month, except at holiday times, when a priest came each Sunday. With foresight the Catholic Church had brought two adjoining plots and in 1968 when Ocean View township was established, a monastery was built behind the church. From then on, regular services were held in the church. Father Smeets looks after the new church at Ocean View and the local congregation from the kommetjie and Sun Valley areas.