Attendance at the 2019 Midlands Reformed Baptist Ladies Rally

The Midlands Reformed Baptist Ladies Rally traces its roots to the Copperbelt back in 1997 when the first ever such gathering was hosted by Central Baptist Church in Chingola. At that time, it was called Copperbelt Annual Baptist Women’s Rally. Overtime, the midlands Reformed Baptist churches saw the need to start a similar conference in the region. In 2011, the first Midlands Reformed Baptist Ladies Rally was held at Kafue Reformed Baptist Church.

Since 2011, the rally has been hosted by various churches in different towns—Kafue, Lusaka, Kabwe, Livingstone, and Chilanga. It is usually held on the third Saturday of the month of May every year, and it rotates among the Reformed Baptist churches. This year, on May 18, 2019, from 09.00 hours to 17.30 hours, Emmasdale Baptist Church had the honour and privilege of hosting the rally. It was held on the church grounds in a tent.

Theme

The theme was “Taming the Tongue—Purifying our Communication.” The key verse was Ephesians 4:29 which reads, “Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.”

Objectives

The objectives of the rally continue to be as follows:

  • To enhance fellowship among women in Reformed Baptist churches.
  • To spread the Reformed faith.
  • To provide an opportunity for an in-depth study of issues that affect Christian women.
  • To evangelise unsaved women and to build the faith of those who know the Lord.

Speakers

We had two speakers at this year’s rally. Apparently both speakers were also speakers at the first rally which was held in Chingola in 1997. Below is the brief profile of each speaker:

Pastor Ronald Kalifungwa is pastor of Lusaka Baptist Church. He began his life of ministry at Fairview Reformed Baptist Church in Mufulira. Later, he moved to Lynwood Baptist Church in South Africa before returning to Zambia and becoming pastor of Lusaka Baptist Church. He is a gifted and faithful expositor of God’s word. He is the newly appointed principal of the Lusaka Ministerial College, an adjunct lecturer at the African Christian University, an associate editor of Reformation Zambia, and an experienced counsellor.

Pastor Isaac Makashinyi is pastor of Emmasdale Baptist Church. He is the academic dean at the Lusaka Ministerial College, an adjunct lecturer at the African Christian University, and an associate editor of Reformation Zambia. He previously served as pastor at Nkhana West Baptist Church (formerly Trinity Baptist Church) in Kitwe and as an elder at Grace Baptist Church in Jackson, Mississippi, USA. Pastor Makashinyi delivered the key note address at the rally.

Opening prayer, welcome remarks and moderation

The opening prayer was offered by Mrs Esther Daka, the welcome was done by Mrs Jenipher Nyendwa, and the moderation was done by Mrs Esther Masebe. All these are from Emmasdale Baptist Church.

Attendance

No head count was done. However, less than 50 chairs were unoccupied out of the 600 chairs that were hired. So, about 550 people attended the rally this year.

Number of churches

More than 30 churches were represented. It was good to also see some women from the Seventh Day Adventist Church and from Pentecostal churches. The rest of the ladies were from Reformed Baptist churches within Lusaka.

Successes

We continue to give praise to our God for his goodness and faithfulness. The preaching was good and the attendance was very encouraging. The objectives were met and everyone who attended appreciated the conference.

Challenges

The following were the challenges observed. First, the inflow of cash for the rally was very slow as compared to the outflow because we needed to buy all our requirements before the rally. Second, most people registered late and made it difficult for us to plan. Last, communication was poor among the churches in preparation for the conference.

Recommendations

  1. Registration must start early for the purposes of planning.
  2. Payments must be done early to enable the planners to buy the things needed in good time.
  3. We would like to encourage all women to attend so that we grow together in the knowledge of the Scriptures.
  4. We must extend the period of the conference to two days so that all the questions can be answered without rushing. If possible, it would be good if it can be shifted to a time when the two days are public holidays.

We look forward to the 2020 rally!

Jennipher Nyendwa

Chairlady, Emmasdale Baptist Ladies Fellowship