The Diocese of Manicaland is linked with the Woolwich Episcopal Area, and has a total of 50 full-time Priests and four full-time evangelists, overseen by Rt Revd Erick Ruwona, who was consecrated Bishop in May 2015.
They have seven parishes and six big mission stations which were established during colonial rule, though the rest of the churches are very rural and poor. The Diocese borders Mozambique to the East, and its offices are in the Provincial capital city, Mutare – below is a video sent to us by Bishop Erick from there.
Despite the effects of Cyclone Idai in parts of the Diocese, Manicaland is faced once again with a major drought this year, and a lot of crops have already failed. The Diocese relies on the contributions of its members to pay the clergy and to run the Diocese, but the economic situation has had a knock-on effect on what people can give to support the church. As Bishop Erick says, the Diocese is engaging in agribusiness to enable sustainable development and food security – in part through a piggery project which the Lent Call can help support. This project has already had two people have been trained in Piggery Husbandry (at a cost of cost USD1050) who are now helping to construct the piggery.
The cost of construction and the purchase of ten sows and two boars will cost USD680, and the animals will also need to be fed and the workers paid, so it’s estimated that USD31,860 is needed to ensure that this project becomes fully operational.
Like our other link Dioceses in Zimbabwe, Manicaland don’t want to use money to plug gaps in finances and top up the donations from parishioners; they’re on a journey towards being self-sustaining, and projects like the piggery will help to bring them closer to ensuring their own livelihoods are secure, rather than “continuing to move around with a begging bowl”.