Evangelical Lutheran Church in Zimbabwe
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The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Zimbabwe (ELCZ) is an Evangelical Lutheran church in Zimbabwe, founded by Swedish and South African missionaries in 1903. The church runs schools (12 schools at Primary, Secondary and High School level), hospitals, clinics, Bible schools and Home Based Care centers for the need of HIV and AIDS infected people.

Structure of organisation

The Church is divided into Dioceses, Deaneries, Parishes and Congregations. Dioceses can only be established on the authority of the Church Assembly. The Diocesan Assembly is the authority that declares a particular area of operation as a congregation, parish or deanery. The workers of the Church include Diocesan Bishops, Deans, Pastors, Deacons and Lay Persons. At each congregation, the Church has the organs of Sunday school, Youth, Luther League Seniors’ Fellowship (LLSF), Women’s Fellowship and Men’s Fellowship, which organs are replicated at parish level. Each parish, made up of two or more congregations, is headed by a Pastor in Charge who reports to a Dean. The Dean in turn reports to the Diocesan Bishop.[1]

Prominent Leaders


The ELCZ was founded in 1903 through the activities of the Church of Sweden Mission (CSM). The Church was originally administered from Zululand, South Africa under the leadership of Bishop Sundgren. It was then called the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Southern Rhodesia. The Church became independent in 1962 with the election of the first Bishop responsible for the Church in Rhodesia.

The ELCZ became a member of the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) in 1963 when it was mainly concentrated in the Mberengwa, Gwanda and Beitbridge districts where its presence was centered on mission stations. However, it has since spread throughout the country with strong presence in urban centers.

Mission Stations

Mnene Mission

Mnene Mission is the ELCZ's oldest mission in Zimbabwe. It is located in Mberengwa. It consists of a Primary School, a High School, a Hospital that has been designated a District/referral Hospital, and a Nurses Training School. Mnene is located on a mission farm which concentrates mainly on cattle rearing and dairy farming to raise income for the Church.

Other Misions

  • Manama, which consists of a High School, Hospital, Bible School and Home Based Care unit;
  • Musume which consists of a High School, Hospital, Bible School and Home Based Care unit;
  • Masase which consists of a High School and Hospital;
  • Chegato which consists of a High School;
  • Zezani which consists of a High School and
  • Masvingo which consists of a Bible School.


  1. Church Organisation, ELCZ Website, retrieved:31 Jan 2019