Explorations in Maputo, Mozambique

Explorations in Maputo, Mozambique

Ingrid and Wayne Wilson – Swaziland

By Ingrid and Wayne Wilson
UCCSA, Mozambican Synod Trip Report
August 25-28, 2005

Greetings Friends and Family,

We write this report to provide you with another briefing of our work with the UCCSA, Mozambique Synod (UCCSA, MS) and the Council of Churches of Mozambique. The itinerary during our recent tour was designed for us to see, smell, hear and touch the ministries and people of Mozambique, all in a matter of three days.

The UCCSA, MS has seven churches in the Maputo Region, many which are at various levels of construction. They vary by size, shape, membership, and ministry, but their core tasks and beliefs are the same.

On day one of our exploration of Maputo, we visited six of the seven church congregations (the seventh, which is housed in the Church Center, we visited last month.). Here are brief statements about those churches.

{mosimage} A) 25 de Junho- this church resides on the same property as the regional synod secretary’s office. It is a congregation that was established many years ago.

B) Infulene- this is also one of the established churches. This congregation has many ministries that meet during the week. On Sundays food is prepared and all attendees share a meal.

{mosimage} C) Matola- the new sanctuary for this congregation is still under construction. The roof of the sanctuary was paid for with the support of Global Ministries, Inc. Nonetheless; the church continues to be filled with hundreds of believers every week.

 D) Chamanculo- the new sanctuary for this congregation is still under construction. The roof of the sanctuary was paid for with the support of Global Ministries, Inc. The pastor also reports that in spite of the buildings physical condition, the sanctuary is filled each week.

E) Mavalane- this is also one of the established churches. It is one of the first churches erected by the Congregational church.

{mosimage} F) Machazini- of the seven churches in the Maputo region, this congregation worships in a building that is constructed of simple materials- straw matting, timber, and galvanized sheeting for the roof. One thing that was most impressive about this congregation is that they have a vision for a future building, demonstrated by a stack of cement blocks, which sat at the front of the existing sanctuary. These were placed there as the first blocks or cornerstone of what shall be in the future.

In the afternoon, we visited Ricatla Seminary. Established as an ecumenical seminary in 1958, the seminary now has 50 full time students. The campus is large, although undeveloped in some places. One unique fact about Ricatla is that it has a variety of styles of housing, whereupon single males, single females, and married couples can occupy. The leadership continues to examine innovative possibilities for its future.

On our second day, we met with the regional church leaders and pastors of the Maputo Region. The regional synod secretary of Maputo is Rev. Orlando Mazive. Also present as a co-host was the regional synod secretary of Inyambane, Rev. Anibal Cuamba. We had a lively discussion that lasted approximately two hours. Our goals were to be informed and updated about existing projects, while at the same time examining possibilities for the future. First, we were updated on the seven congregations and the status of their current buildings. This information was outlined above. Next, we took some time to examine where Global Ministries could be of assistance in the future. The objective was to identify one new project that could be started in the Maputo region in the near future. At the conclusion of the time, we were able to determine seven areas of interest. Admittedly, it was difficult for the leaders to prioritize their interests, and they requested assistance by Global Ministries to do this in accordance with our policies and guidelines. Nonetheless, the seven areas of interest are: 1) establishment of a rural school, 2) establishment of a scholarship program to assist with education at all levels- primary, secondary, university, and seminary/professional education, 3) construction of a day care/ child care center for children of working parents, 4) expansion of HIV/Aids programs, 5) continuation of existing construction projects (churches, regional offices and national headquarters buildings), 6) construction of a health clinic, and 7) examine how they might participate in the Lydia House project, based in Johannesburg. The leadership explained that in the areas of clinic/hospital construction and school construction, the government has a fund that assists in the cost of staffing, materials, and supplies.

On the afternoon of the second day we visited CARAN Center, a project of the Council of Churches of Mozambique. Located on the outskirts of Maputo, CARAN Center continues to provide services to thirty-four girls between the ages of five and sixteen. During the day, the girls are required to go to local schools in the neighborhood of the Center. But after school and on weekends, the girls participate in a variety of developmental and income generating activities. These include: 1) sewing, 2) doll making, 3) hand made table cloth/napkin sets, 4) hand made greeting cards and wall hangings. As we walked around the facility, we also noticed that they were expanding their garden and starting a small chicken project. We were impressed by the love and care demonstrated by the staff of CARAN. Ingrid, in particular, left the Center that day with many innovative ideas that can be explored in the area of income generation and product marketing. They also seem to be a natural fit in the continuing work at Lydia House.

The morning of our third and final full day, we attended church at the Igreja Congregacional de Infulene. The entire worship service was very uplifting and alive. That particular Sunday was the day when new officers and members of many ministries were welcomed and installed. Afterwards, the entire congregation gathered to share their mutual meal together. It was truly a blessed sight. Later on that afternoon we drove back to Swaziland, reflecting and rejoicing the entire way home. Next month, we shall attend the General Assembly of the UCCSA, and in October, we will spend our time visiting and journeying with the pastors and leaders in the Inyambane (northern) region of the UCCSA, Mozambique Synod.

It continues to be a blessing to serve God in Southern Africa.


Ingrid and Wayne Wilson
Your Global Ministries Missionaries in
Swaziland and Mozambique
Wayne and Ingrid Wilson are missionaries with the Kukhany’okusha Zion Church. They are development project officers.