Mission History in Zambia

1945: At the WELS synod convention it is agreed to send two pastors on an exploratory journey to investigate possibilities in Africa.

1953: Worship services begun in Lusaka.

1954: The first worship services were held at Lumano village, the future site of our Central African Medical Mission.

1957: After four years of missionary presence, the LCCA has 18 preaching stations, 1 organized congregation, and an average weekly attendance at worship services of more than 1,000 people.

1960: Another chapel is begun. Plans for a Bible institute were also begun in Lusaka.

1962: The name was changed from Rhodesian Lutheran Church to Lutheran Church of Central Africa.

1964: The mission opened its Bible institute in Chelston, east of Lusaka, to begin training African men for the African ministry. The first synod convention of the LCCA meets with 12 lay delegates, 10 religious workers, 4 missionaries, and 4 visitors.

1968: A “publications building” was completed and dedicated.

1969: A Lutheran seminary was added to the worker training system.

1978: The LCCA takes initiative toward self support by voting for a five percent reduction of subsidy to national pastors each year until the congregations are paying 100 percent of their pastors’ salaries.

1987: Pastor Salimo Hachibamba, one of the first students of the Bible institute and seminary, is called to head those same schools in Chelston near Lusaka.

1988: The LCCA elects its first African man to serve as chairman of the synod an important step in the direction of self-administration.

1992: In order to facilitate a more efficient system of administration and smoother flow of activities, it was agreed to divide into two conferences: the Malawi conference and the Zambia conference.

1996: The Lutheran Chuch of Central Africa—Zambia Conference proposed a five percent reduction of all subsidy received from WELS each year, challenging itself not to cut programs and projects by raising those needed funds from its Zambian congregations. The LCCA decides to place the Bible institute in Lilongwe, Malawi, and the Seminary in Lusaka, Zambia.

1999: The Zambia synod proposed that the five percent reduction of subsidy to the LCCA be applied to the administration budget of the synod first and allow the seminary and publications programs to be funded fully with subsidy at this time. This was to assure that vital programs continue as the synod worked to improve its offering capacity.

2000: All Zambian pastors serving in congregations are off salary subsidy. Congregations pay 100 percent of their called workers’ salaries. Pastor Sam Kawiliza was replaced by Pastor Bismark Kalyobwe as chairman of the LCCA.

2003: Two missionary positions are cut due to budget constraints. The urban ministry coordinator position is created to reach out to a developing upper and middle class of people in Zambia.

2004: Rev. Milton Mpofu is elected to serve as the chairman of the LCCA.

2005: The administration budget for the Lutheran Church of Central Africa—Zambia is funded by 50 percent from local offerings and 50 percent from WELS subsidy. The seminary and press are fully funded by subsidy.

2006: Rev. Fainos Tarisayi is elected to serve as Chairman of the LCCA. The WELS mission made a public and official statement that that the missionaries have put themselves under the direction of the LCCA national church and stand ready to serve in areas and ministries that the LCCA determines. The LCCA strategic plan includes a desire to concentrate more on the urban centers in the country and add regulations directing and governing the works of charities that are being done by and on behalf of the LCCA. Rev. Samuel Kawiliza is called to serve as the third Zambian professor at the seminary.

2008: Rev. Davison Mutentami was elected to serve as chairman of the LCCA.

2009: WELS budget reductions force the removal of three missionary positions in Zambia. The mission now has only four missionaries serving in Zambia. The LCCA has been trying to fill the gap left by the departing missionaries. This is being done by forming larger parish unions and having Zambian Pastors fill the vacancies.

2010: Rev. Davison Mutentami was elected to a second two-year term as chairman of the LCCA.

2011: A Zimbabwe student, Genius Moyo, graduated from the seminary and started his vicar year. This was in connection with the outreach program into Zimbabwe. The Africa Region Conference of the Confessional Evangelical Lutheran Conference was held in Lusaka with Delegates form Malawi, Zambia, Cameroon and Nigeria in attendance.

2012: Pastor Davison Mutentami was elected to serve as the synod Chairman

2014: The Synod budget is funded 80% from LCCA offerings and 20 % from subsidy form WELS. The publications budget is funded 40% from sales and 60% from WELS. (There is a slow progression to increasing prices of the sale of books to eventually have the press self funding through sales. The seminary professor’s salary is conversed 100% by the LCCA Administrative budget. All other funding for the seminary and press is covered by WELS.

The GRATSI 2010 programme has held it’s final session for the 2010 class in Lusaka.   The 5 Zambian pastors who graduated with a Bachelor of Divinity (BDiv) are; Pastors Kamwata, Simweeleba, Tarisayi, Phiri and Mutentami.

Pastor Bismark Kalyobwe was elected to serve as the Synod Chairman as the 29th biannual Synod Convention.

A Supreme Court Case ruled that the Bethel Church Property given to the LCCA by the Zambia Government actually belonged to another person. The property was surrendered to the previous title holder with the loss of over $300,000 of investment.

2016: Pastor David Baloy was elected to serve as the Synod Chairman at the 30th biannual Synod Convention. Pastor David Kamwata and Missionary Daniel Sargent visited the Lutheran Church Mission in Christ in Kenya. This was at the invitation of this church to discuss fellowship issues with this group.

2017: The Synodical Council of the LCCA proposed official discussions with the LCMC in Kenya to reach Full Fellowship.


Browse through and share pictures of Africa, taken by WELS missionaries and national workers.