Interview with Rev Master Jumbe - Blantyre Synod Schools Chaplain
Rev Master Jumbe, Synod Schools Chaplain
The following are notes from an interview with Rev Master Jumbe the Blantyre Synod Schools Chaplain
STRUCTURE - The Schools Chaplain has a link with two different departments - YOUTH and CHAPLAINCY.
AREAS OF RESPONSIBILITY - Schools (primary, secondary and tertiary education)
Question (Q) – Blantyre Synod Website Editor
Answer (A) – Rev Master Jumbe
Q Where are you from?
A Phalombe District
Q Did you grow up under Mulanje Mountain?
A yes, in Palombe Boma
Q Where you there during the disaster in 1991?
A No, in Blantyre. But we went to help friends and relatives. In fact some friends were lost. 500 or more died.
A part primary in Mulanje and part Chileka. Went to St Patrick's secondary in 1991.
A In 1995 went to Chancellor College, Zomba. Did BA in theology and philosophy
Q After that
A Taught at Chinamwali Private Sec School in Zomba
A left there and started working with Kungoni Art Craft Centre in Dedza District, near lakeshore where the Mua Mission is. There for a year in 2001.
A 2002 went to Zomba Theological College to do BD, graduating in 2004.
A posted to Livilidzi Presbytery (Balaka) in 2004
A Youth Director - 2005 - 2006
A 2007 Presbytery Clerk
A 2008 moved to Blantyre City where was Youth Director until 2011
A Chosen to be schools chaplain in Jan 2012
A Studying Masters in Theology through Mzuzu
Q All that time since ZTC you had congregations?
Q Current Congregation
A Mpachika CCAP, under Soche Hill
Q How and when a Christian?
A I was born a Christian!
A both my parents were Christians
A always accepted Christian message from the beginning.
Q Why did you want to go into the ministry. When did you feel the call?
A I have admired the pastoral ministry from my youth, from primary school. Perhaps this is because of the ministers I was exposed to then. Even at secondary school what was on my mind was to become a minister.
A I asked Rev John Mann, from Ireland, when in form 1. He said just continue with your education. He encouraged me to work hard and continue with my education.
Q Was there an area of the ministry you were called to and if so what?
A I am happy to be the Schools Chaplain. Rev John Mann was the Schools Chaplain and he inspired me. I felt called to work with the youth
A Also, while at Chancellor College I came up with the idea of CCAPSO with some others.
A We asked ourselves 'Why can't we have an organisation to champion the doctrines of the CCAP?'
A Happy to see that CCAPSO, starting with 6 people, is big.
Q Were there problems with Christian meetings unaffiliated with an established Christian denomination?
A Yes. People could come there who know nothing about the bible and start shouting and being a disruptive influence.
A We are working hard to tackle the same issues. We want the young people to have sound doctrine and good teaching of the bible.
Q Can you give an example of the kind of problematic teachings that occur among the youth who are unaffiliated with a mature and stable denomination like the CCAP?
A example: teachings that lead people astray. A preoccupation with the devil.
A sensationalist teachings about the devil and evil spirits that are not rooted in sound biblical teaching.
A lack of emphasis on Jesus Christ.
A teachings about illnesses and suffering. They teach that it is only through prayer that healing comes. They teach people to avoid modern medicine.
A prayer that implies that after prayer everything will be fine. Take away the need for hard work at school
Q Where do these teachings come from?
A various churches where there is not proper theological education for those who go into the ministry.
A many sources e.g. movies (Nigerian films).
Q So, these things are relevant to your department?
A yes, absolutely.
Q How does Blantyre Synod respond and how does your department respond?
A we work closely with CCAPSO.
A teaching Christian doctrine
A preach the Word of God to students
A conduct devotional services
A provide spiritual counseling for students facing different challenges
A providing pastoral care
A organising conferences in conjunction with CCAPSO
A distributing literature when available
A produce lectionary
A evening services
A encourage local ministers to conduct services in schools
Q Is there a schools chaplain in every presbytery?
A yes, and works with committee
A those committee members help and oversee - make sure that each school has prayers and devotional services
Q Is it an area that each presbytery takes seriously?
A Yes. But is something started recently. Previously the emphasis was on Blantyre City.
A Recently we have been pushing out to the whole synod.
Q What is the approach to teaching with CCAPSO.
A teaching from our reformed tradition.
A teach the bible from a reformed perspective
A HIV - for a long time the issue has been for the government, the church was talking about it so much. Now the church is addressing the issue more.
A we teach against stigmatising those with HIV.
Q How is the youth in Malawi changing? How do you summarise the youth in Malawi?
A young people are strongly Christian in general. The problem is many strange teachings. Technology - films, internet are affecting what is going into the minds of young Christians.
Thank you Rev. Jumbe. That was most interesting.