A Historic Visit to Angola
A dedication service was held for our church in Kuito, Angola, on December 1, 2022. We have over 350 churches in Angola, and Kuito is our headquarters in the Bié Province, where Apostolic Faith members number about 77,000. In addition to a new church building, an office was also completed, which was desperately needed to accommodate the administrative functions necessary for the tremendous work in this region.
In attendance for the occasion was Superintendent General Darrel Lee, who traveled from the Portland headquarters with Reverend John Musgrave. This was a historic trip as it was the first visit to Angola by a superintendent general, in part due to the civil war that occupied that country for twenty-seven years. In addition, Southern Africa District Superintendent Oniyas Gumbo traveled from Zimbabwe with Reverend Newton Jaravani, as well as South Africa District Superintendent Confidence Nemaungani.
Upon arrival, the guests received a warm welcome from Angola District Superintendent Antonio Castilho, Provincial Overseer and Kuito pastor Oscar Cassoma Ucuemande, and a large group of Kuito saints—thousands of them lined the road leading to the church and were singing and waving as the guests approached. At the church, a ribbon cutting ceremony was held and then the service followed. The sanctuary was filled to capacity with many standing outside. After a choir prelude, congregational singing, and prayer, Reverend Castilho introduced the visitors and government officials who were also in attendance. The Scripture reading and sermon were interpreted in Portuguese and Umbundu, the primary native language, and Reverend Lee gave the message from 2 Chronicles 7:15-16, focusing on “A Dedicated Building and Life.” The service concluded with a congregational song and prayer.
The following day, a dedication was held for the Cazenga church, which is pastored by Alexandre Tchimbiambiulu. This church is the headquarters of the Luanda Province, where we have seventeen churches. The property is in a beautiful location with a view of the Atlantic Ocean, and the new building includes a large sanctuary with offices on a second floor.
Again, congregants lined the street by the main gate to the church and the visiting leaders were lovingly welcomed. At the church door, a ribbon cutting ceremony was held, which concluded with a turn of the key in the lock to open the door and allow the congregation to enter. Following the congregational singing and opening prayer, Provincial Overseer Emilia Piedosa Constantino introduced the guests. Choir selections were presented in English, French, and Portuguese, followed by the Scripture reading. The sermon was taken from 2 Chronicles 7:1 and focused on the statement, “What you should find in a dedicated church.” The prayer of dedication followed and then the people responded to the altar call with zeal.
Before departing Angola, the visiting team expressed deep appreciation for the dedication of the Angola brethren, as well as their enthusiasm for the Gospel and infectious joy. They said it is easy to understand why the work in Angola continues to grow rapidly.