South Africa General Mission (SAGM) Missionaries and the Ndau People of Chimanimani, Zimbabwe

Elijah Elijah Ngoweni Dube


South Africa General Mission (SAGM) missionaries evangelized the Chimanimani District of Zimbabwe from 1897 onwards. SAGM missionaries focused exclusively on this Ndau territory in the light of the pact between missionaries that did not allow them to encroach into territories where other missionaries were already involved. This was to avoid what the missionaries called ‘competing for souls’. This article presents an emic study of this work that the SAGM missionaries initiated in Zimbabwe. The article follows a desk analysis approach (Chitando and Biri, 2016). It uses primary sources in the form of the South African Pioneer, articles that were written by several SAGM missionaries that were involved in this evangelization work. The article finds that SAGM missionaries, like missionaries elsewhere, had a paternalistic attitude towards the Ndau people and as a result the Ndau were not very welcoming to these “guests” at least in the first few decades of their work in Chimanimani District 


South Africa General Mission (SAGM), United Baptist Church (UBC), Africa Evangelical Fellowship (AEF), Serving in Mission (SIM)

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