Bishop of BIC Church in Zimbabwe assumes presidency of Mennonite World Conference

Danisa Ndlovu (left), bishop of the Brethren in Christ Church

in Zimbabwe and president of Mennonite World Conference

(MWC), accepts a ceremonial gavel from Nancy Heisey

(right), outgoing president of Mennonite World Conference

(MWC).Photo provided by MWC.

GRANTHAM, Pa. (July 17, 2009)—At Mennonite World Conference's (MWC) 2009 global assembly in Asuncion, Paraguay, Danisa Ndlovu, bishop of the Brethren in Christ Church in Zimbabwe, was installed as president of the interdenominational Anabaptist organization.

In a special ceremony at the General Council session on Saturday, July 11, Nancy Heisey, outoging president of MWC, transferred the duties of the president to Ndlovu.

During the event, she presented Ndlovu with a gavel that has been passed from president to president.

Executive Committee member Thijn Thijink-van der Vlugt of the Netherlands then led a prayer for the new president.

Following the prayer, Ndlovu thanked the General Council for their support and love. “I know the future is in God’s hands,” he said. “I pray we will continue to seek God’s will for the work of MWC.”

While the Brethren in Christ may be a relatively small player within the worldwide community of Anabaptist churches, their impact is being felt in a large way. In addition to Ndlovu, who formerly served as MWC's vice-president, outgoing president Heisey holds dual membership in the Brethren in Christ Church in North America and the Mennonite Church USA.

Denominational leaders in North America view Ndlovu's installation as a major step for the international Brethren in Christ Church.

“Danisa is a gracious, wise, articulate, and effective leader among the BIC worldwide,” said Warren Hoffman, moderator of the Brethren in Christ Church in North America. “It is exciting to have him represent the BIC in this worldwide forum.”

The Mennonite World Conference is a global community of Christian churches who trace their beginning to the 16th-century Radical Reformation in Europe, particularly to the Anabaptist movement. Today, close to 1,500,000 believers belong to this faith family; at least 60 percent are African, Asian, or Latin American.