The Sunday News
Nkosilesisa Ncube, Sunday Life Reporter
Botswana-BASED Bulawayo-born attorney and devout Christian enthusiast Thomas Sibanda has put together a biographical publication, chronicling the life of Hilda Mazabane, a celebrated figure in Christian circles.
Mazabane is best known in the Christian community as the woman who toured Heaven. She had a near-death experience in 1971, which reportedly “resulted in her tour of Heaven”. It is after this experience that her life was impacted and transformed.
The book is an authorised inspirational biography on the life and ministry of Mazabane and covers her life story from the period 1939 to date, detailing the growth of the Pentecostal movement in Zimbabwe from the lens of the personal life of Hilda Mazabane, from her humble days at Luveve settlement in the 1940s.
It is the joint effort of many pastors and ministers have contributed to this work, in relating their experiences on the life and ministry of Mama Mazabane and includes a foreword by Reverend Geoffrey Bizeni Mkhwananzi of the Assemblies of God (Back to God) Church and Apostle Dr Goodwill Shana of Word Of Life International Ministries.
Interesting special areas of the plot of the 11 chapter-biography include the prayer sessions that the Monday Prayer Group had with the late Vice-President of Zimbabwe, Dr Joshua Nkomo and gives a glimpse of his spiritual life. There is also an extra section of testimonials about the life and ministry of Mama Mazabane from different people interviewed by the author.
A commentary of the book by Dr Goodwill Shana of Word of Life ministries describes the book as a treasure that privileges readers to look beyond the public ministry of Mama Mazabane and discover and be enlightened about the forces that shaped a matriarch and a general.
“Written in a down-to-earth but pithy and engaging manner, it leads the reader on a journey through her life and lessons learnt in sometimes small but very instructive events and occasions in her life. Best of all, it is written while she is still alive and offers opportunities for this generation to glean from the book as well as from her still unfolding journey,” says the commentary.
The author, Thomas Sibanda is an attorney and a post graduate banking law scholar. He operates a commercial law practice in Gaborone, Botswana under the name and style of Sibanda Law Chambers. Thomas is also an avid researcher of charismatic church history, particularly in Southern Africa. This book is his first publication of dedicated research on the life of an influential personality in the shaping and development of the charismatic movement in Zimbabwe.