Saturday, April 27
Yosefa Mhalamhala was one of thousands of young men who traveled to the diamond mines of Kimberley in the late 1800s in search of work. In 1882, after living on a Swiss mission station and becoming a Christian, he returned to his family home in what is today southern Mozambique. Mhalamhala began to preach the gospel. Soon, he and other Swiss-trained evangelists had established a cluster of thriving Christian communities.
Through the grace of God and the dedication of its members, the church that Mhalamhala helped to plant—known today as the Presbyterian Church of Mozambique (IPM)—has become a Spirit-filled denomination with a continuing commitment to evangelism. Long prevented from ministering outside the southern third of the country, the IPM has in recent years partnered with the PC(USA) and The Outreach Foundation to share the gospel in the country’s central and northern districts.
Worship has played a central role in the spiritual life of the IPM, so it was a blessing to participate in the closing service of the 2011 National Synod. Much of it was dedicated to the offering. As church leaders called each of the IPM’s 12 presbyteries in turn, members would emerge from the 2,000-strong congregation, singing with gusto and swaying toward the collection baskets in the front. Before returning to their seats, many of the congregants paused to dance energetically with the four young pastors who acted as animateurs, “breathers of life.” What an inspiring lesson in the joy of giving!
—Dr. Doug Tilton, PC(USA) regional liaison for Southern Africa
Let us join in prayer for:
Presbyterian Church of Mozambique: Rev. Ernesto Langa, moderator, Mr. Bartolomeu Langa, administrator, Rev. Jose Tovela, president of synod council • Christian Council of Mozambique: Rev. Marcos Macamo, general secretary • Ricatla Seminary
Let us pray
Gracious God, we give thanks that you call us to share Christ’s message of salvation and liberation with all your people. Help us to encourage and enhance each other’s efforts, just as you multiply the gifts we share. Amen.