By Staff Reporter
JEHOVAH’S Witnesses transformed Chiredzi Showgrounds into a house of worship for their three-day Love Never Fails regional convention at the weekend.
The joyous occasion was punctuated by the baptism of at least 40 during the main session of the convention on Saturday.
The oldest of the baptismal candidates was 86-year-old Chimunda Muzadzo Mafuvadze of Mbengwa, in Chiredzi North. The youngest was, Ruth Mutetwa aged 11 from Triangle Estates.
About 2 000 people from Mwenezi, Rutenga, Chikombedzi, Zaka, Jerera and Chiredzi attended the convention – the biggest in
the district in recent years.
For 86-year-old Mafuvadze, the theme Love Never Fails focused on studying Jehovah’s unfailing love by sending his only begotten son, Jesus Christ, to die for the sins of the world and to redeem mankind.
Mafuvadze had this to say: “I can now look forward to my resurrection if my death precedes Jehovah’s restored paradise, which is in the short distant future. I am also looking forward to seeing my late wife and other relatives in the new world.”
The three-day Chiredzi gathering was one of the 62 conventions scheduled at various locations across Zimbabwe this year,
which started on June 21 through the weekend of October 11-13.
A unique feature of the conventions is that they are being presented in several languages, Swahili, French, Venda, Chewa,
Chinese, Shona, Ndebele, Tonga, Zimbabwe Sign Language and English.
Highlights of the programme included a public discourse by Zebron Sande, a travelling minister of Jehovah’s Witnesses,
while the concluding discourse was presented by John Jubber, a visiting speaker from the Zimbabwe Branch, among many
other speakers who urged all to consider Jehovah’s acts of loyal love and to love one another.
Jubber also urged witnesses to strengthen their faith as Jehovah continues to show loyalty to his people.
Friday’s speakers focused on how love can help people surmount obstacles such as a troubled upbringing, chronic illness
or poverty. On Saturday, the convention considered how the Bible can help family members show love for each another.
Sunday’s programme addressed overcoming prejudice and hatred.
Spokesperson for the organisation John Madyausiku said: “This was indeed, a big moment for us. To witness an 86-year old
showing his dedication to Jehovah is beyond comprehension. It’s a rarity, but it shows that Jehovah wants everyone to
survive the end of this system of things.”
Madyausiku added: “We were urged to consider Jehovah’s acts of love that never fails. This kind of love is amazing and
can only be found in Jehovah’s organisation. Regardless of challenges people are facing in this part of the country, the
huge numbers of those that attended showed that it is only in Jehovah we have hope.
“The theme this year is Love Never Fails. We feel that in the world today, there is just a great lack of love, but if we
focus on love and how that affects us as individuals, as family members, as members of the community, we’re hoping that
the impact, to even our area, is felt months after.”
Madyausiku said that the programme examined how Bible principles help people in practical ways.
Every convention uses an identical theme and programme, which keeps everyone in the faith on the same page, Madyausiku said.
In ancient times, annual festivals and other gatherings for worship strengthened God’s servants spiritually and were joyful occasions.
In modern times, annual regional conventions provide Jehovah’s Witnesses with spiritual refreshment and encouragement along with joyful Christian association. The conventions also give a fine witness, provide an opportunity to experience
Jehovah’s love, and offer a taste of life in the new world.
Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that Jehovah is the creator and that, Jesus Christ, his son, was sent to Earth to die for
mankind. As Christians, they also believe that Jesus Christ is the “first and foremost” Jehovah’s Witness.
Their beliefs are based in the whole Bible, both the Old and New Testaments, which the faith recognises as “God’s
inspired message to humans”.
There are more than 8,5 million Jehovah’s Witnesses earth-wide, making up over 120 000 congregations. Nearly 120 000
Bible students,interested ones and Witnesses will attend this year’s conventions countrywide.