In August our Church Planting Pastor Jonathon Mbewe took a team of men he is discipling to Matonje in the Eastern Province. The Gospel was presented through preaching and the Jesus Film. A church was started and a pastor was left to oversee the new work. They encountered opposition from some of the local chiefs and another “church” who did not want them preaching the Gospel that would deliver them from HELL and witchcraft, etc. Many parts of Africa that have received the Gospel, both the true Gospel and “another” gospel, syncretize it with the traditional religion. The people can be very superstitious and fearful as you will read in this testimony.
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Here is Jonathan’s report of the trip. I have edited it a “bit” to help you understand his Zambian English.
“For the trip our budget was small, but we reached at 17:30 Hrs Chipembe station to go to Matonje, we hired the car which cost us a lot of money. We reached Matonje around 22:00 Hrs (10PM) on Wednesday. We were introduced to the headman of Matonje Village. And the headman welcomed us and all the people in the village that there are visitors in the village who came to preach the Good News. Next morning we started to preach around 13:00hrs -18:00hrs on Thursday, we did not know there were 3 headmen in the village. At 18:00hrs (6PM) another headman came and stopped us from continuing our programs. We stopped and pack our machines. He told us to see him next morning on 16th August 2013 on Friday. I went to the headman and elders, they told me that “we cannot allow you with the team to continued your program here. But you can stay here as long as you want.” We stay there 2 days minus doing anything
On 17th August Saturday morning another headman from the next village come to us and told us to preach in his village. On Sunday we went to Kasongo village to preach the good news and show Jesus film. When the people saw the film on the first time to watch the calling us Satanist because it was the first time to watch a film on a white cloth. They even feared to take photos, they said that we are going to sale them or joining them in Satanism. We preached there for 2 days. The last day another head man came from Manado village. But we were not able to reach it because of the distance and transport. It is too far from kasongo to Mando village about 6 miles.
People need us to go and preached good news because there is only 1 church ROMAN Catholic for 5 villages. People there believe in witchcraft and witchdoctors. (syncretism, some Christianity mixed with traditional religion) But they are still many more villages who need to hear the good news and see the Jesus film.
The leader’s (pastor in training) name is Shadreck Phiri for the church we planted there. They are lacking Bibles, we left one Bible for the leader.”