Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, a transportation and commercial center with a population of 675,000 (2002), is located in Matabeleland, South Province, in southwest Zimbabwe. It is the second largest city in that country. It was an important source of supplies and transportation for the early mission work of the Brethren in Christ (in 1898 in the Matopo Hills southeast of the city), but no mission work was started in Bulawayo before 1956. In 1987 there were nine congregations of the Ibandla Labazalwane Kukristu e-Zimbabwe (Brethren in Christ Church in Zimbabwe) in the city: Bulawayo Central, Éntumbane, Hillside, Lobengula, Mpopoma, Nkulumane, Pumula, Ngubuyenja, and Rangemore. In addition, there were some small group meetings that might become congregations. Lobengula was the largest congregation with some 1,500 people attending Sunday morning services. Bulawayo, with more than 2,200 Brethren in Christ members, had the largest concentration of this denomination of any city in the world.
Church planting in Bulawayo began in 1955 with visitation of former Brethren in Christ students employed in the city. Don Zook and Sandi Vundla began making weekend trips to Bulawayo and organized Sunday schools and worship services in two different townships. The first church was dedicated in 1957 at Mpopoma with Sandi Vundla as resident pastor. He also gave leadership in weekly released-time Bible classes in public schools, Bible study sessions for adults, and a growing hospital visitation program.
The headquarters for the Ibandla Labazalwane Kukristu e-Zimbabwe are located in Bulawayo as well as the office of the church's bishop. Related to that office is Acagugu Evangeli, the Ndebele radio station, and the publication of Amazwi Amahle, the church paper. The Matopo Book Center is also located in Bulawayo.
Brillinger, Velma R. "Development of Brethren in Christ Church Work in Bulawayo." Look on the Fields published with the Evangelical Visitor 70 (17 June 1957): 2.
Brethren in Christ Handbook of Missions (1956, 1957, 1958).
Martin, Dorothy M. Memoirs at BIC Archives (Grantham, Pennsylvania, USA).
|Author(s)||Dorothy M Martin|
Cite This Article
Martin, Dorothy M. "Bulawayo (Zimbabwe)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1987. Web. 20 Oct 2017. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Bulawayo_(Zimbabwe)&oldid=122452.
Martin, Dorothy M. (1987). Bulawayo (Zimbabwe). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 20 October 2017, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Bulawayo_(Zimbabwe)&oldid=122452.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 5, pp. 106-107. All rights reserved.
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