|David Chibanga being given farewell present by John Kumwenda,|
one of the KBC elders, while Matthew Fikati patiently awaits his turn
We continue to be grateful for our pastoral internship programme. We have seen off our two interns who did a full year with us—Matthew Fikati and David Chibanga—and another six are beginning to trickle in for 2014. Hopefully, we should have all of them in by the end of January. In this blog post, I have asked both Matthew and David to share with us an overview of what they learned during their internship. Here is what they have written:
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Finally, my pastoral internship at Kabwata Baptist has come to the end. Therefore, with heart full of joy, I would like to update you briefly on how the Lord has used it to make me a better Christian and to prepare me for the Christian ministry. I must confess that sometimes we think we know, not until we are exposed and then we realize that we actually don’t know. Having interacted with mature Christians, with books and having gone through the Bible College, I personally thought I finally arrived and that I was ready for the Christian ministry. Little did I know that I was not yet ready for the Christian ministry, not until going through the pastoral internship and being exposed to many things from the practical viewpoint on how to run the church and generally on the Christian ministry. The internship has therefore helped me to have that practical aspect.
Perhaps, you may be interested in knowing some of things I have learnt practically during the program. Well, here are some of the few out of many: The way an eldership functions, the way certain things and issues in the church should be carried out and its importance, issues such us elders meetings, church discipline, members meetings, oversight meetings, updating of members list… Working and walking closely with pastor Conrad Mbewe has challenged me practically on the issues to do with hard work, time management, and balancing of fieldwork with personal reading/studying...
It has really been a blessing to go through the pastoral internship and learnt a lot. I am not saying that I will not make mistakes here and there in my pastoral ministry, but I can imagine the many mistakes I would have made if I never went through the pastoral internship. To God be the glory!
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The pastoral internship programme of Kabwata Baptist Church is an experience worth talking about. Let me divide this in four quarters of the year.
The first quarter gave me an exposure to a practical approach of missions and church ministries. Every beginning of the year, KBC holds a missions conference and missionaries prayer retreat. The Bible came alive to me, especially with respect to the Great Commission. KBC has about fifteen ministries. Through these ministries the church operates seven days a week. I was attached to the Media Ministry, which records sermons and airs them on various radio channels in the country.
The second quarter brought another dimension of outreach to me through KBC’s home groups. These groups organised Easter evangelistic programmes and I preached the gospel in these event. Another preaching opportunity during this period came through their Campus Outreach Ministry, which gave me opportunities to preach to students at various campuses. Pointing these students to the saving grace of Christ was an awesome experience.
The third quarter brought more evangelistic opportunities through the Public Events Ministry. This was at the Zambia Agricultural and Commercial Show. I had an opportunity to preach and help distribute well over 8,000 pamphlets produced by the Publishing Ministry of KBC. These pamphlets contained tracts with gospel messages.
In the last quarter, I was given an exposure to missions. I and another intern went to Sinda in Eastern Province. There were two churches—Sinda Reformed and Chitawe Baptist churches. It was a time of learning and teaching. It was an awesome time.
Beside all this, there was also the practical interaction with the eldership at KBC. This was another spiritual treat. This internship is a very good programme for anyone wishing to enter full time pastoral work. The pastoral experience is really worth it.