Discipleship Resources International
Zimbabwe Publishing Team
Zimbabwe Episcopal Area
Bishop Eben Nhiwatiwa
2010 - Present
Team Leader: Rev. Violet Muteza
Team Coordinator: Rev. Sophirina Sign
The Upper Room Devotional Guide, distribution and sale
- Give Us Our Daily Bread: Focus on Jeremiah as the Quadrennial Theme
- Christian Faith Sharing (with catechism)
- Lessons on Prayer and Fasting
- Lessons on Stewardship
- The Christian Liturgical Calendar
- Old Time Religion
- Standing Rules
- Hymn Books with updated Christian worship liturgies (English, Shona, Ndebele)
- Inventory of Preaching
- A Guide for Candidates for Baptism and Confirmation (multi-authored) with lesson plans
- Connectional Ministries Handbook
African Ministry Series
Our Episcopal leader, Bishop E. K. Nhiwatiwa and our authors have written books published through the Disciples Resources International, the African Ministry Series. These are:
- Why We Preach: Preaching in the African Context, vol. 1, by Bishop Nhiwatiwa
- How We Preach: Preaching in the African Context, vol 2, by Bishop Nhiwatiwa
- Time is Now: Preparing Candidates for Baptism and Confirmation by Rev. Dr. Gift Machinga
- Walking Side-by-Side
- Everything Belongs to God: Stewardship in The United Methodist Church by Rev. Dr. Sophrina Sign
Material Production: The Zimbabwean Story
The year 2008 marked a new era and a turning point in the production and availability of teaching and learning materials in the Zimbabwe Episcopal Area of the United Methodist Church. The preceding years have been characterized by a cry for standardized and affordable materials that would enhance Christian Education programs in our local churches.
Year after year, a call was made at every sitting of the Annual Conference for the production of such materials. Responding to this growing need, the Boards of Discipleship for the two Conferences in the Episcopal Area, as led by Rev. Dr. Gift K Machinga and Rev. Charles Nyamakope took on board Revs. Sophirina Sign and Phillip Musharu (then Connectional Ministries directors) to take up this challenge. The efforts of these four were rewarded when the Episcopal Area, through the Bishop’s office engaged and entered into partnership with the General Board of Discipleship represented by Steve Bryant.
The first training and planning meeting at Resthaven in Harare in the year 2009, marked the birth of a Publishing Team which has worked tirelessly for the production of the teaching and learning materials.
One milestone achievement this Quadrennium is the production of a Braille hymnal. This costly, but worthy project will benefit immensely the other section of our faith community. This is a first in the Zimbabwean Christian history. Translation and publication of a hymnal from the major indigenous Shona language into Ndebele (2nd major language) is to be realized before the year ends. These efforts undoubtedly, will go a very long way in the evangelization and making of disciples programs.
CHURCH SCHOOL CURRICULUM
We thank God for the finalization of the first series of Church School educational materials to benefit children; youths and young adults; as well as adults and older adults. Production of these materials is underway and will be unveiled at the forthcoming Annual Conferences in December.
WORK IN PROGRESS
We have quite a number of works that are in the making in the form of books, and booklets with topics that address our needy areas in ministry.
Our churches have benefitted immensely from these publications. Testimonies are abounding to the fact that Sunday School programs have been revived in many congregations resulting from the availability of these resource materials. Candidates for baptism and confirmation are now trained adequately using the standardized materials. These materials are playing a leading role in the making of disciples as emphasis is put on nurturing programs. More and more teaching programs are taking place in our congregations through small groups using these affordable materials. Writing and editing skills have also been imparted to our authors through workshops facilitated by Kara Oliver.
We want to appreciate the splendid job being done by our team of competent authors and editors. The efforts by the current Publishing Team comprised of Revs. Sophirina Sign, Allan Gurupira, Joseph Chimberengwa, Simbarashe Mazhara, and Gift K Machinga are greatly acknowledged. We applaud the support we always receive from Steve Bryant and Kara Oliver. Last but not least, we appreciate the inspiration and support from the Bishop’s office. The production of materials in the Zimbabwe Area is a legacy that is to be guarded jealously. We do not doubt that these works are bound to reach greater heights and will be a permanent feature in the Episcopal Area.