THE Apostolic Faith Mission in Zimbabwe’s Harare South Assembly last week celebrated its matriarchs who spearheaded the expansion of the province from its infancy.

The eight pioneers are Mesdames Rosina Mutemererwa, Miriam Chiangwa, Winnet Murefu, Rosemary Shumbambiri, Ileen Munjeri, Margaret Mazadza, Grace Magaya, Tabeth Chiweshe and Josephine Madziyire. They received blankets, cakes and cash as a token of appreciation during a three-day women’s conference at the Harare South Assembly.

Starting at Mashonaland Province, Mrs Mazadza took over the reins in 1988 before it became known as Harare Province. In 1997 she handed over to Mrs Murefu who in turn left the post for Mesdames Chiangwa and Munjeri in 2003. Then it had broken into Harare West and East.

The expansion saw the birth of other assemblies which include Highfield, Glen Norah, Budiriro, Southerton, Glen View, Ushewokunze and Mhondoro with the women playing a critical leadership role.

Mrs Murefu said their objective was to send the church represented by the people into the communities as opposed to people desperately trying to locate the church. “During that time it was known as Mashonaland Province then it was to later develop into Harare West, East, North, South and Central,” she said.

Mrs Chiangwa is stationed at the Marlborough Assembly while Mesdams Mutemererwa (Greendale) Mazadza (Ruwa) Murefu (Borrowdale), Shumbambiri (Bindura), Munjeri (Chisipite), Magaya (Budiriro West), Chiweshe (Chitungwiza)and Madziyire (Bulawayo).

In commending the pastors of Harare South, Mrs Mutemererwa told congregants that they needed to learn that blessings of honouring a parent outweighed blessings from anyone else including church leaders.

“If you are failing to have answers to your prayers in life check your foundation. There is no one who can bless you more than your parents. Some come here well dressed and looking good but their parents are in a sorry state at home. You shame the name of our God,” she said.