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Stephen Kazimba  The Prosperity Bishop

Life & Style

Stephen Kazimba  The Prosperity Bishop

Archibishop-elect Steven Kazimba

Last Sunday January 19, an estimated 3000 Anglicans, mostly from across Mityana Diocese, gathered at St. Andrew’s Cathedral Mityana to bid farewell to the Archbishop elect of the Church of Uganda.

The colourful ceremony that drew tears of joy, as Dr. Kazimba was delivering his last sermon as the  Bishop of Mityana, before his installation that is scheduled for March 2, at Namirembe Archdiocese, in Kampala, was characterised by powerful testimonies from people.

The farewell service that attracted politicians, the business community, clergy, and representatives from Buganda kingdom, drew unanimous praise and appreciation for his achievements recorded over the 11 years he has spent at the helm of the Diocese in Mityana.

Almost everyone was in agreement that Kazimba’s tenure has been the most transformative period for the diocese since its creation in May 1977.

One of Dr. Kazimba’s most enduring legacies was his determination to lift the church as an institution as well as the Christian community from poverty to prosperity.

According to Rev. Canon Benon Ssemambo, now retired, Kazimba’s philosophy, right from the time he took over as the Bishop of Mityana, was to encourage the shepherd to look for the lost coin, before they look for the lost sheep, hence the idea of business evangelism that has been the cornerstone of his runaway success in Mityana.

“As we look for the lost sheep, we must look for the lost coin. We must look for the money first if we are to attract followers,” Canon Ssemambo explained his understanding of Dr. Kazimba’s philosophy.

“Today, whenever you tune into the media, the people who get into trouble, ask Maama Fina (a traditional healer) to come to their rescue. Nobody ever mentions the Bishop or the Church to help them, because they know the church is a begging church,” added Canon Ssemambo.

Canon Ssemambo noted that through business evangelism, Mityana diocese recorded tremendous progress as a church, the clergy and the Anglican community of Mityana.

Right from the moment he was consecrated as the 4th Bishop of Mityana, he embarked on the job of developing the diocese’s assets.

Blessed with strong faith, charisma, good mobilisation and leadership skills, Kazimba urged Christians in his first year of service, to embark on the job of building the Bishop’s House that would host visitors of the diocese.

“It was not good to have visitors and host them in a hotel. So we had to expand the house and make it suitable to host us,” Bishop Kazimba recollects.

He launched a ground-up fundraising drive that ensured that every Christian in the diocese makes a contribution towards the project.

Christians were pleasantly shocked to learn that the house had been built in a space of just months.

After that, he immediately embarked on the momentous task of rebuilding St. Andrew’s Cathedral. A smaller old cathedral building was razed down and a new much bigger one erected. The project appeared so big that many Christians thought he was embarking on an insurmountable task.

Using ties with prominent business people, politicians in Mityana and beyond, and friends from abroad, a committee headed by Kampala businessman Kiyimba Freeman, Kazimba pulled off the miraculous project beyond most people’s expectations. The construction project cost over UGX 6bn and was finished on time.

He used similar tactics to expand the diocesan offices, erect a new three storey commercial building in Mityana district named Pennsylvania House as well as a six storey Pension House at Ndejje University in Luwero. The Pension house, built from humble contributions of Christians and the clergy from across the diocese, is an income generating project for retired former clergy of Mityana diocese.

According to Canon Ssemmambo, the revenues from the 6-storey hostel building ensures that at the end of every month, every retired clergyman / woman is assured of finding their money on the account.

Impeccable integrity

Godfrey Ssenyondo, a christian from Naama Parish also attributes Kazimba’s incredible achievements to his unbending integrity. David Kabanda, one of the businessmen in Mityana illustrated Kazimba’s integrity when he said that unlike other priests, whenever Kazimba would send someone to buy something from his hardware shop, he demand a genuine receipt and had a way of proving that the receipt was genuine.

During the farewell service, the clergy expressed great appreciation for his very many development projects.

Highlighted achievements

Built the Bishop Mukasa conference center Started a campaign to buy cars for clergy to the point that by the time of his departure, almost every Reverend in the 60-strong parishes had a car.

Strongly supported the academic upgrading of clergy Ensured the diocese’s quarter contribution was paid promptly

Supported the economic empowerment of Christians through promotion of several agricultural enterprises such as coffee farming, piggery, diary and goat farming.

Built bridges with Equity bank to encourage Christians to save with it in exchange for the bank’s support to the diocese’s business ventures.

Spiritual renewal

Bishop Kazimba belongs to the new breed of born-again Christians in the Church of Uganda. Throughout his eleven year reign, Kazimba has undertaken a vigorous campaign for spiritual renewal among Christians by urging them to not only publicly proclaim Jesus Christ as their saviour, but also in encouraging them to embrace the values of Christ and preach them to others.

Kazimba’s decision to intensify crusades and missionary work in Mityana came against the background of hostility among traditional Christians, some of who considered his charismatic style as an attempt to transform the Anglican Church into a born again church.

Words didn’t sway him whatsoever as he vigorously and persistently urged followers to profess as born again.

On the other hand, he acknowledged that a number of Christians were devil worshippers.

After eleven years, Kazimba is happy that devil worshipping has reduced.

“A lot was being said about some areas in the diocese that there were so many traditional worshippers. I am happy that what was being said is no longer heard and seen,” he said.

Nsubuga Kasumba, a journalist with CBS FM attests to Bishop Kazimba’s efforts in strengthening people’s faith.

“At the end of every service, the Bishop asks members of the audience to get saved. One day, although I had gone for work, I felt touched and I had to come out and declare Jesus as my saviour,” Kasumba states.

In the course of his leadership, Kazimba established and promoted the mission department for spiritual renewal.

At the time of his departure, the mission department had a fully equipped office, a new vehicle which specifically transports clergy for missionary work.

Education and Health

 The role of the church in schools is well known. However, in most Anglican-founded schools, mismanagement has driven many down the drain. Kazimba is  credited for re-engaging with the managements of the schools to ensure they are properly run.

In the health arena, Kazimba actively supported the Uganda Protestant Medical Bureau to undertake health campaigns, including setting up regular camps in the district to treat the vulnerable and sick people.

In his farewell sermon, Bishop Kazimba had only two messages for the people of Mityana, preserve unity and commitment to Jesus Christ shocked to learn that the house had been built in  a space of just months.

After that, he immediately embarked on the momentous task of rebuilding St. Andrew’s Cathedral. A smaller old cathedral building was razed down and a new much bigger one erected. The project appeared so big that many Christians thought he was embarking on an insurmountable task.

Using ties with prominent business people, politicians in Mityana and beyond, and friends from abroad, a committee headed by Kampala businessman Kiyimba Freeman, Kazimba pulled off the miraculous project beyond most people’s expectations. The construction project cost over UGX 6bn and was finished on time.

He used similar tactics to expand the diocesan offices, erect a new three storey commercial building in Mityana district named Pennsylvania House as well as a six storey Pension House at Ndejje University in Luwero. The Pension house, built from humble contributions of Christians and the clergy from across the diocese, is an income generating project for retired former clergy of Mityana diocese.

According to Canon Ssemmambo, the revenues from the 6-storey hostel building ensures that at the end of every month, every retired clergyman / woman is assured of finding their money on the account.

Impeccable integrity

Godfrey Ssenyondo, a christian from Naama Parish also attributes Kazimba’s incredible achievements to his unbending integrity. David Kabanda, one of the businessmen in Mityana illustrated Kazimba’s integrity when he said that unlike other priests, whenever Kazimba would send someone to buy something from his hardware shop, he demand a genuine receipt and had a way of proving that the receipt was genuine.

During the farewell service, the clergy expressed great appreciation for his very many development projects.

Highlighted achievements

Built the Bishop Mukasa conference centre

Started a campaign to buy cars for clergy to the point that by the time of his departure, almost every Reverend in the 60-strong parishes had a car.

Strongly supported the academic upgrading of clergy

Ensured the diocese’s quarter contribution was paid promptly

Supported the economic empowerment of Christians through promotion of several agricultural enterprises such as coffee farming, piggery, diary and goat farming.

Built bridges with Equity bank to encourage Christians to save with it in exchange for the bank’s support to the diocese’s business ventures.

Ow’ Ekitiibwa Joseph Kawuki

We wish to thank God for the gift of Dr. Samuel Kazimba Mugalu. God gifted him with the ability to preach the gospel that matches the needs of ordinary folks. We appreciate his development-oriented approach and his hard work ethic and high level of integrity. He has contributed enormously to the development of Church through the construction of many churches across the diocese as well as other projects. He has established many businesses that support Christians and the clergy in a unique way.

I wish to request the people of Mityana to seriously heed the advice of Dr. Kazimba including his last sermon in which he cautioned us against hypocrisy and jealousy amongst us but rather encouraged us to forge unity.

We wish him the best of luck in his new assignment as he serves Uganda and Buganda. We know that he will not forget his background – his Mpindi clan as well as Buganda because he demonstrated it clearly last year when he visited Katikkiro Charles Peter Mayiga to officially report that he had been elected to the office of the Archbishop of the Church of Uganda.

 

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