Zimbabwe: Mission Centres (3 of 8)

In several of the districts that we visited in Zimbabwe there was a mission centre that in many cases was founded over 100 years ago. These were locations that started to be places of ministry when missionaries from the United States came to what was then Southern Rhodesia. These sites often had a hospital, school, sanctuary and other ministry sites. At Old Mutare Mission, the original site of United Methodist ministry in the country, it felt like an old school mission site, which is exactly what it was. I am not sure how to describe this feeling. I felt thankful for ministry taking place in that site for a long time, however this was mixed with an awareness that in the early 1900s the relationship between missionaries and native people was not always healthy. In any case, I am grateful that God sent and continues to send people to serve others in the name of Jesus Christ.

What area of ministry has continued for many years where you are?

Is Christianity the only missionary religion?

I have had the opportunity to lead the Builders Sunday Morning Small Group for three weeks studying the gospel according to Mark. This question was from the final class meeting.

Is Christianity the only missionary religion? The answer is no.

From the Wikipedia entry for missionary – “A missionary is a member of a religion who works to convert those who do not share the missionary’s faith; someone who proselytizes.”

From this entry and others, I was able to find a few a little more information on particular religions.

Religions that have missionary efforts

  • Buddhism
  • Christianity
  • The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
  • Islam
  • Jehovah’s Witnesses

Religions that do not have missionary efforts

  • Hinduism
  • Judaism

This is certainly not a comprehensive list of religions, but perhaps gives an idea about the division. Some religions are more comfortable with pluralism, which has a direct impact on whether they carry out missionary efforts. This was an interesting question for me to research as I had not really thought about this question before. Thanks for the question!

Citation – Wikipedia contributors, “Missionary,” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Missionary&oldid=209656492 (accessed May 5, 2008).