Our Twinning Partners – other contributions

Interview With Members of Mpachika Womens Guild

Q How many of there are you?
A 140-ish

Q How long has the Mpachika Guild been running for?
A Since 1956

Q What is the average age of the Guild members?
A It used to be women over 40 and now it is over 20.

Q Is there a process for joining the Guild?
A Women need to start attending the Guild about 2 years beforehand and then they undergo training for a year, attending special classes.

Q How do you decide what projects you support?
A We fall under Blantyre Synod but we try to support ourselves.  In terms of projects, we decide at the time   who we support in the area e.g. food and clothes to orphans etc.

Q Tell me about your costumes.
A We wear white tunics and head scarves with black skirts.  We pay for our own costumes and new ones are   blessed in Church before use.  We wear special chitenjes with Synod motifs for special occasions.

Q Can you give me a brief description of your activities during the week?
A On Tuesdays we do hospital visits for Church members and choir practice.  We have our own choir (one of 8  at Mpachika church) and 3/4 of our members are in the choir.  On Thursdays we have choir practise and  knitting and craft activities.  The items that we make are sold at the church for funds for the church or for  projects.  On Saturdays, we have Bible Study and go round visiting older people in the area – many of   whom cannot now make it to church.

Q How is your Committee made up?
A We have an Executive committee comprising of the President, Chairperson, Vice Chairperson, Secretary,   Vice Secretary, Treasurer and four general committee members.  We are elected by a voting system.  There   are 7 zones in the Mpachika area and we try to have a committee member from each zone for ease of  communication.

Interview with Members of St. Mark’s Guild

Q What do you call yourself?
A The Guild used to be called the Women’s Guild but changed a few years ago to simply “The Guild”.

Q How many of you are there?
A About 32 people.

Q How long has St. Mark’s Guild been running for?
A For over 100 years.  We have just had our 100 years centenary celebrations!

Q What is the average age of Guild members and who is membership open to?
A The average age of members is around 50+ and  membership is open to both men and women.

Q Is there a process for joining the Guild?
A No, you just turn up.  We pay an annual membership fee  which goes to the Central Committee of the Church  of Scotland in Edinburgh.

Q How do you decide which projects you support?
A Nationally, we are given a choice of 6 projects every three years by the Church of Scotland.  Each Guild can choose their own projects from these six.  We can choose two or three or just one.

Q Do you have costumes?
A No, we just come as we are.

Q Can you give me a brief description of your activities during the week?
A We meet for a meeting every two weeks when we have an activity or a guest speaker.  However, there is also   much duplication of membership with other St. Mark’s organisations like The Guild of Friendship, Circle of  Care and those members who are concerned with organisation of coffee mornings etc.

Q How is your committee made up?
A We have a President, a Secretary and Treasurer.  People put names forward for election and there is the usual voting system.  The Secretary usually goes on to become the President.
As our relationship with our friends in Mpachika grows we receive from time to time contributions for our magazine which are also kept on the website.  All of the material below was first published in our Autumn 2005 Messenger.

God Is Great
By Moses Chakhaza, Mpachika Church, Malawi

How grateful is this man
How Mercy is this Man
The man that the world knows
His deeds and messages will last forever
His Kingdom is about to be seen
Very soon we shall see Him eye to eye

As the Oracles made by old Prophets
Came true that a manger shall produce King of all Kings
As shepherds saw the light at first
As the Wise-men new the story
Indeed this is the man
That the whole world expected
I love this song

That the book of life gives out
How great the Father is
That he sacrificed his only son
To the sinful earth
His blood should be the path
And the Holy Spirit our light
Let us repent

Jesus! Jesus!
You are the Messiah
That the old Prophets Prophesized
We follow the Prayer You gave out
Whoever believes in God through you
Shall have eternal life
What a wonderful Messiah.

Sunday School
by Hazel Tembo, Mpachika Church, Malawi

I am Sunday School
He who dwells in Me shall lead a Christian life
At sunrise, while birds are singing their morning songs,

I dash to Church
As little children, we Praise the Lord through singing
Bible study at Catechumen is the next stage
All this is grooming us to be good Christians

The foundation of Reverends is Sunday school
The foundation of Women’s guild is Sunday school
The foundation of Church elders is Sunday school
Let us work hard at Sunday school so that we become Deacons
Let us work hard at Sunday school so that we become reliable Christians

The following poem was given to Rosalyn by a young member of Mpachika church – also a member of the Mpachika Main Youth Choir (of which John and she are honorary members now!!).  He wrote it after their visit to the service on the first Sunday they visited in September 2006.  Rosalyn promised him it would go in the next magazine as it did and is now kept here.

The Wonderful Sunday
By Moses Chakhaza

Indeed it was the day
That Mpachika CCAP came into singing
Joyful souls gathered
“I thought it was a joke”
Said one weak-minded person
Who just visited the church
I looked at him without despair
Because I knew it was a great day.

I remained silent for a while
As I welcomed the wonderful Sunday and the Aberdonians
In a vision
I felt like being with the Angelsl
With no doubts, I proved the partnership
To be holily bound
With a point that it was evidenced by God.

I was very excited
As I saw the image of St. Mark’s Church
With a hopeful feeling that we are still together
Mwalandilldwa! Mwalandillidwa!
(Welcome! Welcome!)
We shouted while smiling at them
What a wonderful day!

The following two poems from Tinkhani Tembo and Hazel Tembo were first printed in our Autumn 2007 Messenger.

The Well
1. This is the well
Where you can draw
Spiritual water
And feel well

2. Water from this well
Washes clean
The dirtiest of the dirty,
Fully quenches
The thirst of the thirsty

3. On the edges
Of this wonderful well
Spiritual pasture

4. Unless the Shepherd
Leads his hungry and thirsty sheep
Towards the well
They will remain thirsty and dirty
In the land of plenty.


Three is great my friends
Three is great my brothers and sisters in Christ
Remember when one is being baptized
He/she is being baptised
He/she is being baptized in the name of
Father, Son and the Holy Spirit
Which is three

Three is great my friends
Remember that Simon Petro denied
Jesus Christ three times
Three is great my friends

Three is great my friends
Three is great
Remember that Judas the Scariot sold
Jesus with three coins
This tells us that three is great

Three is great my friends
Remember that Jesus rose in the third day
Three is great
Three is great my friends

Three is great my friend
When one finishes praying
He/she prays in the name of
Father, Son and the Holy Spirit
Three is great
Three is great my friends