By Gilbert Munetsi A local religious institution, Mercy Miracle Ministries (MMM) recently undertook to raise funds for the purchase of, among other items, a marque, chairs, tractor tyres and a public address system.
When all logistical needs had been put in place, they discovered what was left was the engagement of a special guest, someone with the ability to turn the event on and inspire congregants and other invited guests to donate towards the noble cause.
Someone, a stranger for that matter, introduced them to a lady he described as many things in one – communications strategist, human capital development practitioner, serial entrepreneur, wellness and peak performance coach, author, publisher and tele-evangelist.
Though pastor Cynthia Chirinda was 300km away in Kariba where she was conducting a training programme she did not hesitate to accept the offer, telling the hosts she was game for anything charity.
And arrive she did at the local hotel where MMM had booked for their fundraising dinner. Soon as she was invited to the podium for the keynote address she had no time to break the ice, but delved straight into the “main course” of her delivery.
“Many times we fool ourselves and we are misguided because we think that it takes us to be walking in a lot of wealth and abundance to be able to give to others,” Chirinda said.
“There are many reasons why its uncomfortable o give and ordinarily, your gathering here would be called foolishness.
“But I assure you, there is something targeted in your heart and spirit that ought to drive you to be expectant of great things in your life.”
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The opening remarks alone seemed to have the desired effect of thawing the hearts and minds of those gathered for, at the end of the event, the cash and pledges raised were in excess of US$4 000.
Part of the amount raised was from some 15 books she donated as well as a raffle for five holiday vouchers courtesy of Monkey Safaris of Kariba.
One would need a second shake of Chirinda’s hand to know who she really is.
A down-to-earth personality on the surface, she comes with a resume that is long as the arm.
A waltz on her academic and professional achievements would reveal an author, speaker and publisher whose practice focuses on personal leadership, healing and communication for strategic connectedness.
A literary critic who summarised her biography could have come closest when he noted: “Her messages promote disruptive thinking by provoking people and institutions to challenge their comfort zones, live integrated lives and create trans-generational solutions through paradigm shifts and transformative actions.”
The managing consultant of Wholeness Incorporated and a recipient of several leadership awards, Chirinda has worked with numerous international development agencies, government ministries, coalitions, political organisations, faith-based institutions and commissions in the areas of leadership development, youth and women empowerment.
She has authored more than 10 books and these include You Are Not Damaged Goods, Can the Whole Woman Stand Up, The Wealthy Diary African Wisdom, The Whole You, Intelligent Conversations and Success Within Reach.
Meanwhile, MMM, which hosted last Friday’s fundraiser, celebrates its fourth anniversary on July 15.
Starting off with prayers being conducted at home in Zengeza 2, Chitungwiza, founder Apostle Archibold Katanha said his ministry had since blossomed into a religious institution with an ever-growing membership.
“As we celebrate our next anniversary in the next fortnight, we derive pride in the fact that we have been ably guided by the Almighty God to fulfill our mandate that includes – but is not limited to – preaching the word and winning souls, teaching, healing, deliverance and giving,” said Katanha.
“Through all this, we have been able to demonstrate God’s power and prove to the nation and world at large that, indeed, Jesus is alive!
“As a shepherd, I am heartily indebted to the flock that I lead for mobilizing resources and donating to institutions that include Mother of Peace and Mutemwa Leprosy Centre in Mutoko, Bumhudzo Old People’s Home in Chitungwiza and, just recently, Chikurubi Maximum Prison.
“We have also been able to pay tuition for a number of orphaned children within the Chitungwiza community and make regular visits to homes to donate especially to the disabled.”