100 years of Ministry and Worship Makokoba Uniting Presbyterian Church celebrates a century of God’s faithfulness
THE Makokoba Uniting Presbyterian Church in Southern Africa this year celebrates 100 years of ministry and worship. Established in 1916, the church, under the theme “Celebrating God’s Faithfulness through 100 years of Ministry and Worship: Marching for His Glory”, marks an exciting time in the life of the church.
The church celebrates the past and embraces the future acknowledging God’s faithfulness over the years.
It has seen 100 years of God’s word being proclaimed, the church being led by the spirit, being transformed by God and moving forward by faith.
Makokoba Presbyterian has a sincere desire to show the love of Christ to everyone.
The purpose of the church is to declare the gospel, disciple believers and do the work of the church.
In line with God’s vision of the church to create a strong and holy people who will fill the earth with the knowledge of his glory, Makokoba Presbyterian seeks to provide living witness to His goodness and bring refreshment to the earth like dew, watering the world with God’s grace through good works and words of truth.
The church also seeks to leave an impression on others wherever it goes – sharing righteousness, peace and joy of God’s spirit ruled kingdom as well as to aspire to greatness in His name.
The mission of the church is divine and threefold incorporating evangelism (making disciples), edification (bringing every believer into personal and corporate maturity) and worship (giving heartfelt praise to God).
The church is God’s agency to evangelise the world therefore Makokoba Presbyterian primarily seeks to preach the gospel (Matthew 28:19-20, Mark 16:15), to teach the saved (1 Peter 1:5-7) and to mature believers preparing them to perform works of ministry (Ephesians 4:11-12).
It is also Makokoba Presbyterian’s charge to provide a spiritual atmosphere for orderly worship (1 Corinthians 14:40), to reproduce the character of Christ (Philippians 2:5), to bring the joy of the Lord to mankind and to influence the world by being the salt and the light of the world and for the presence of the church to be an “antiseptic” to sin.
The church membership currently stands at over 300 people with about 30 percent comprising children, youth constitute 25 percent, men 10 percent and women 45 percent.
The church also has a substantial number of the elderly in the congregation — the eldest being in their 90s.
The Makokoba Presbyterian main service starts at 10AM with Holy Communion shared every first Sunday of the month. Sunday school starts at 10AM while youth services are held on Wednesdays at 6PM and Saturdays at 2PM. Women’s fellowship is held on Thursdays at 2PM, on every second Saturday of the month at 2PM and on Sundays at 12PM.
The men meet for fellowship on Mondays at 5.30PM while district meetings are held on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 5.30PM.
The church was built during the First World War and has survived the Second World War as well as the country’s liberation struggle.
Makokoba Presbyterian honours the people God used to bring the church to being — their sacrifice, generosity and pioneering spirit of the first leaders and the contribution of each generation since.
It is the desire of the church to carry on the good work, operating in unity for the great commission and extension of the kingdom of God for His glory.
In earlier years, the church building was used as a school serving the surrounding community. Pupils were trained to be responsible citizens with strong character and unquestionable skills.
The church plays an active role in addressing the needs of the people and is at the moment engaged in a programme — Hope for a Child in Christ (HOCIC) — which seeks to support children affected by the HIV/ Aids pandemic.
Several stations have been opened by the church over the years although only three of them are still operational.
These include Gwatemba in Filabusi, Vumbachikwe in Gwanda, Tshelima along Nyamandlovu Road, Kennilworth past Inyathi Mission, Vimridge along Harare Road, Mnondo Farm along Khami Road, Khayelitsha in Nkulumane suburb, Mhawini and Kamativi.
Most of the preaching stations were closed during the liberation struggle and have not been re-opened since as the church is in the process of re-building them. The ones that remain operational are Vimridge, Khayelitsha and Kennilworth.
Having gone through the past 100 years, the church looks forward with zeal to the next part of their journey to eternity, victoriously marching for His glory.
As part of its 100th anniversary celebrations, the church held a march on November 12 after which Reverend M Mutonganavo preached. The march was symbolic for God’s glory. On November 13, the church held a worship service honouring people used by God over the ages with November 14 having been set aside to honour the men’s ministry.
November 15 saw the hosting of a service showcasing districts (home groups) midweek worship and prayer services where congregants encourage one another while today the church holds a birthday service highlighting the fruits of Makokoba.
Makokoba Presbyterian marks this day as the birthday of the church. A service for all will be held at 5.30PM.
At this service, the church shall share a birthday cake and celebrate communion led by the Moderator of the Presbytery of Zimbabwe, Reverend TA Chemvumi.
Tomorrow, there will be a service to honour the women’s ministry while on Friday there will be a centenary celebration dinner where prominent historian Pathisa Nyathi is expected to be a guest speaker. The dinner is also expected to raise funds towards paying school fees for less privileged children.
On Saturday, Makokoba Presbyterian hosts a family fun day which starts at 10AM. The day is meant to celebrate family life.
The anniversary celebrations will be concluded by a worship service on Sunday as the church celebrates God’s faithfulness in the past 100 years.
Reverend M Ramulondi, on behalf of the Moderator of the General Assembly, is expected to preach at the service.
The iconic Makokoba Uniting Presbyterian Church building in Bulawayo