Zambia - October 2021
On 24th October Zambia celebrates the 57th anniversary of the nation’s independence. It is an occasion for looking back with thanksgiving.
In 1964, on Independence Day, few people gave Zambia a chance of peace or prosperity or real political and economic independence. In five of the countries bordering Zambia there were wars. Landlocked Zambia, a thousand miles from the sea, had no good route to the coast to export the copper on which the economy depended - only a long dirt road to Dar-es-Salaam. There was no university, and there were very few secondary schools for Africans; nearly all skilled professional jobs were done by foreigners.
The borders of Zambia – formerly Northern Rhodesia – had been drawn by European politicians in Berlin in 1885, with no regard to or knowledge of the people who lived there. So Zambia was an artificial creation with more than 70 different languages spoken and people’s primary loyalty being to their extended family and home area.
Today, we give thanks that Zambia has been an independent democratic peaceful nation for nearly 60 years, despite the big problems it was born with.
There have been setbacks – times of economic hardship, the AIDs pandemic, devastating drought, leading to the failure of electricity generation from Kariba Dam, some corrupt government, crop failures, the COVID pandemic.
There has also been huge expansion in schools and universities, great improvements in road links especially to previous isolated areas and, for some people, higher living standards.
Christian churches have multiplied and the number of church worshippers has increased enormously. The government elected in August this year has renewed the declaration that Zambia is a Christian country.
Give thanks for Zambia and for the United Church of Zambia. There are three United Church of Zambia ministers serving as circuit ministers in British Methodism; Zambia sends ministers to us – a rapid change from 40 years ago, when Britain was sending ministers to Zambia.
Continue to pray for the United Church of Zambia, as they continue to pray for us.
Zambia update - October 2021
From October 2021 newsletter of Salisbury Methodist Church
Our Zambia link
The number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in Zambia has fallen from the peak in June and July; two or three COVID deaths are recorded each day.
This fall is not because of a large vaccination programme; less than 10% of the population have received doses. The weather is warming up, and schools are back. People are still being urged to wear face masks, keep socially distant and wash hands frequently.
Church activities are not yet back to normal, but Sunday worship, including Holy Communion, is resumed, as well as local Bible Study meetings.
The newly elected government, led by President, Hakainde Hichilema, is pursuing very different policies from its predecessor – much more encouragement of private enterprise and looking to the West for assistance in Zambia’s economic recovery. Soon after the new government was inaugurated, the UK agreed to provide £9 million for small and medium enterprises and for girls’ education in Zambia.
We are asked to pray, giving thanks for the peaceful change of government and praying that the new government will deliver their promise to reduce poverty in Zambia.
In the United Church of Zambia, we are asked to pray that the mission and ministry of Christ will be maintained even with the anti-COVID restrictions.
At St John’s, Mtendere, we give thanks that the building of the Consistory (equivalent to our Circuit) offices has just begun and pray that the building work goes on well.
Our partner in the link to St John’s, Salisbury URC, will be using some of the worship music from Zambia composed and performed by Revd Cephas Ng’oma. You can enjoy it by clicking on:
Music from Revd Ng’oma | Salisbury United Reformed Revd Church (salisburyurc.co.uk)
Please continue to pray for our link congregation – St John’s United Church of Zambia, Mtendere, Lusaka, as they continue to pray for us.
Worship Music from Rev Cephas Ng’oma of the United Church of Zambia
Prayers for Zambia - August 2021
16 August 2021
Zambia has a new President as a result of the elections on 12th August. He is Hakainde Hichilema, a millionaire businessman; the people of Zambia – 59% of the voters – have turned to him in the hope that he will improve the economy of the country.
Mr Hichilema, who has stood for President five times before and lost, is the first President of Zambia whose roots are in the Southern Province and in the Seventh Day Adventist Church.
We are asked to pray for peace and unity in the country following the election results. Both sides have accused each other of intimidation at the polls.
The pandemic continues to claim lives in Zambia, but the number of cases and deaths has declined since the spike in mid-July. Schools will fully re-open before the end of August.
The United Church of Zambia is still not allowing church fellowship and organisations to meet, except for section Bible Study. Holy Communion services are being held again, after nearly two months when they were not held. Sunday worship is supposed to be with masks and social distancing, but that is difficult to impose.
We are asked to pray for unity in the church, which has members of various political parties, and for maintaining fellowship and pastoral care in congregations amid the COVID restrictions.
And we are asked to pray for health workers and the vaccination programme; less than 10% of adults in Zambia have received one dose.
A letter of welcome to the new Bishop of Lusaka Presbytery - December 2020
Greetings to new Bishop Lusaka 2020.pdf
PDF file, 108.73 KB, last modified 10 months ago.Download
Farewell to Bishop Rodwell Chomba
The Wessex Synod of the United Reformed Church sends its warmest greetings to Bishop Rodwell Chomba and to the Ministers, Elders and Members of the Lusaka Presbytery of he United Church of Zambia: Grace to you and Peace.
We would wish to join with others in testifying to the way in which our God has used Bishop Chomba in the service of the Presbytery and of the whole Church of Christ; and the blessings we ourselves have received through his Ministry. We are so thankful for the ways in which he has embraced the opportunities provided by the link between the Wessex Synod and the Lusaka Presbytery and given his support to the extension and development of the programme.
As he prepares for the next stage of Ministry we assure him of our prayers for him, and for Gertrude and the whole family, confident that the God who calls us to service will bless all his endeavours.
We shall pray too for every Minster and congregation, and especially for our friend Revd Dr Lordwell Siame, as the Presbytery moves to this time of transition.
Yours in the bonds of Christian fellowship: the Moderator, Ministers, Elders and Members of the Wessex Synod of the need Reformed Church.