BULAWAYO, Friday, October 13, 1967 — The London Missionary Society, which founded the Inyati Mission, the first in Rhodesia, in 1859, has merged two other churches to form the United Congregational Church of Southern Africa, with a combined membership of about 104 000 people. The chairman of the new church is the Rev JK Main, who lives at Hope Fountain Mission, near Bulawayo, and who is also the new secretary of the Rhodesian and Botswana regional councils.
This was announced yesterday by the Rev Paul King, previously minister to the Congregational Union of South Africa Churches in Bulawayo and now minister to the new church here.
He said the main effect will be a multi-racial approach at Rhodesia Regional Council meetings of the new church. The London Missionary Society, he explained, had been entirely African. It had seven main stations in Rhodesia — each of which had beneath it 20 to 30 district churches.
The Congregational Union of South Africa, mainly European, had four churches in Rhodesia — at Salisbury, Que Que, Redcliff and Bulawayo. The third church to merge into new body was the Bantu Congregational Church in Natal, formed by the American Board Mission in the early part of this century.