“I need also to share with this merit to teach other people as well, whatever I’ve learned from here. I will go as Paul says in 2 Timothy 2:2—whatever you get, you need also bring back to other people, so that will not be the end.”

Nehemiah Kanzanthu

Program Master of Divinity ('18)
Age 53
Ministering in Lilongwe
Family Wife, two girls (23, 20), and two boys (20, 15)

Nehemiah is a full-time senior pastor at his church. He is studying not only to gain more pastoral training, but also to be able to impart his knowledge and skills to other members of the church.

$100 a month provides a pastor a scholarship to study at CAPA.

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Interview excerpt from September 2016


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Nehemiah describes what he loves about God’s creation of Malawi.


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Interview with Nehemiah Kanzanthu

2017 2016 2015

Q1

What has been your favorite class so far?

Q2

What is the most important lesson that you’ve learned from CAPA?

Q3

How has your preaching changed?

Q4

What has been you biggest challenge in school?

Q5

What are you looking forward to most this year?

Q6

Do you have any future ministry plans for your church?

Q7

What are some ways you have seen God’s providence in your life?

Q8

What is your favorite book of the Bible and why?

Q9

Do you have any prayer requests?

Q1

What do you like to do during your free time?

Q2

How long have you been a pastor?

Q3

In what ways has the Lord grown you this year?

Q4

What has He been teaching you? Whether here at CAPA or through ministry?

Q5

What are you looking forward to this year?

Q6

What challenges have you faced in ministry?

Q7

What is one way the Lord has blessed you through CAPA?

Q8

What is something that you've learned here that has benefited your church greatly?

Q9

Can you tell us about some of the friendships that you have at CAPA?

Q1

Why did you decide to attend CAPA?

Q2

What is your current ministry?

Q3

What are your future plans for ministry?

Q4

What are some challenges you have faced in ministry?

Q5

How did you come to believe that Jesus died for your sins?

Q6

What is your favorite thing about Malawi?

Q7

What are some things you would like people to pray for?

Q8

What are some things about CAPA that you are thankful for?

Q1

What has been your favorite class so far?

To be precise, to be very selective on that, that cannot be true, because every subject has got a very good impact in my ministry. So, all the subjects. Especially in terms of preaching has really improved because I’ve been in the ministry so long, since 1998.

Q2

What is the most important lesson that you’ve learned from CAPA?

Most especially, preaching in expository because, with each and every verse, instead of doing maybe topical. But with the assistance of CAPA, I think it has really impacted me. Sure.

Q3

How has your preaching changed?

My preaching has been changed—I understand from my part, even, when I’m delivering the message. Even the people really get something from what I’ve been preaching, so with that I can see, I’ve really improved because even the people can easily follow what I’m preaching. Sure.

Q4

What has been you biggest challenge in school?

Biggest challenge in school is about the responsibilities. Because right now, with a lot of assignments, and I’m still serving a congregation, I need some time to also be with my family. So, it hasn’t been all that easy, but still with God’s guidance—I’m a third year—God willing, by next year, I’ll be through. So at least I will have achieved from what CAPA has done. Sure.

Q5

What are you looking forward to most this year?

After graduating, I feel I shouldn’t just be on my own just to know myself. Apart from that, I’m serving the church, but I need also to share with this merit to teach other people as well, whatever I’ve learned from here. I will go as Paul says in 2 Timothy 2:2—whatever you get, you need also bring back to other people, so that will not be the end. Sure.

Q6

Do you have any future ministry plans for your church?

Yes, because right now, I’m just doing in part, but once I finished, I’ll consider the church, as the other people—as I’ve said—teaching whatever the material I’ve learned from here.

Are there any specific ministries you’re involved in at church?

Yeah, like preaching, counseling, teaching, and the like. Sure.

Q7

What are some ways you have seen God’s providence in your life?

Right now, I’m in panic with a lot of work, but still, despite all those tight schedules, I can still say God still be on my part. So, I can say I’m not alone, I’m with Him, He’s caring for me. He’s also providing in terms of fees—as I’ve said, I’ve got four children. Two are doing post-graduate school. So to find fees for them, it’s also another challenge, together with myself as well as to feed the family. So, it isn’t all that easy, but still God has been on my part. Sure.

Q8

What is your favorite book of the Bible and why?

Colossians. The whole book. It’s really inspiring, sure, because it deals with everyday life in comparison, because others can think of the earth, but we need always to think of the heavenly things. Here, we are just like flowers which whither now and again. But there to be with the Lord—that will be for eternity. So, that’s very important for me. Sure.

Q9

Do you have any prayer requests?

Yeah, well, the prayer is questions about the financial stand here—it’s not easy. So, if the Lord can open the doors so that maybe most of my children can have better education, because like my firstborn daughter, because she’s a girl, she’s doing for a degree in finance management, so it’s very expensive. Sure.

Is there anything else you’d like to say?

I wish to say, I’d like to thank God for whatever He’s doing for CAPA personnel, for what they do, for the professors. May God continue to guide and bless whoever is supporting in terms of cash and kind support and the like. May God bless all those people.

Q1

What do you like to do during your free time?

Always assisting people in terms of counseling.

Q2

How long have you been a pastor?

This is my eighteenth year.

Q3

In what ways has the Lord grown you this year?

There is nothing possible without God. That's an encouragement to me. Sure.

Q4

What has He been teaching you? Whether here at CAPA or through ministry?

I think God has been on my side. It's throughout my life — whether in school, in church, in the home — I can see that God has really teach me a lot wherever we feel that maybe we cannot afford to go through, but God's grace. Sure.

Q5

What are you looking forward to this year?

I'm still looking forward to learn more and more so that I can assist other people better. Because what I am doing right now is like… do you know a dove? Wherever has got some chicks, it goes outside to fetch for the food, and then feed the little ones. Whenever I'm learning something, I need to feed that message, that Scripture, that information, to the people. Sure.

Q6

What challenges have you faced in ministry?

Since I've done a lot of years in schooling, my main challenge is like how to get funds to [pay for school] as well as to support the family. That has been my great challenge. Sure.

Q7

What is one way the Lord has blessed you through CAPA?

Yeah, in terms of as a pastor, because we need to be excavengers, not just to be confident of what we are doing but we need to have more and more knowledge. We have to learn more and more so that whatever I've learnt, I have to share. It's not a single thing, but a number of things, whenever, whatever I find, I still share that. And people out there in the congregation, they feel happy and they grow so that they can reach maturity in their spiritual life. Sure.

Q8

What is something that you've learned here that has benefited your church greatly?

We learnt today in the chapel about the leader. The leader has to be serving willingly, and he has to face all the challenges as a leader. He has to be strong, courageous, willing to serve so that even the members see the examples of a leader. So I try to see that the members I'm serving see why and how I'm doing that. So that really helps them to grow spiritually mature. Sure.

Q9

Can you tell us about some of the friendships that you have at CAPA?

I'm really happy because now and again, each and every module, we are meeting different people, different lecturers, so that is adding my friendship in my memory, in my serving. Even my fellow students, those students, maybe had it been I didn't come to CAPA, I couldn't manage to be chatting with them or knowing them, but we are freely mixing, freely sharing, freely enjoying the CAPA material. Sure.

Q1

Why did you decide to attend CAPA?

I decided to attend CAPA because to be a pastor… for a certain extent, pastors need to be scavengers, despite I finished my theological training, I felt I need to be getting more and more so that I can serve better.

When I heard about CAPA, I thought I needed to join to be trained, so that I can add more on what I already have. And only this first week I was seeing how I can also assist the members in the church where I am serving. Yesterday, I was at the congregation, and I really started to give in what I already have from CAPA. So, I am really sure that this will really do something very great so that even the people at the congregation benefit from this material, sure.

Q2

What is your current ministry?

As a church minister, there is a lot. But to be more precise, I am not a preacher, but I am a teacher. From what I did at Veritas [College], I was training other members.

So that passion, it’s still in me, so that I can also use the CAPA material to continue impart the knowledge, impart the skills, whatever that can be necessary for the church members so that they can grow spiritually mature, sure.

Because, I think I can say, this time here in Malawi, people have heard a lot of sermons, but they are lacking teaching. So, if people can know what to do, I think that’s far much better.

Q3

What are your future plans for ministry?

My future plan, as I’ve already said, my initial purpose, my initial passion, is whatever I get, I shouldn’t keep on my own. And if at all, there’s any chance to continue with CAPA for more and more, more stages… like doctorate and the like, I am really eager.

Because, once I can get that, that will not be only for me. Like what Paul says in 2 Timothy 2:2, whatever you get, you have not to keep by yourself, but also share with others, so that you can at least understand the Bible better, sure.

Q4

What are some challenges you have faced in ministry?

Mm, challenges… many people don’t really understand the Bible. Because somebody said, “An idle mind is the workshop of the devil.” Because if they are not equipped to understand the Bible better, they can have a lot of problems.

But I can see, in intensifying teaching the church members, they are gaining a lot, so [then] they can have time to maybe make some more problems in the church. Because we say, the church members are not good, they are not disciplined, because they are not taught what to do.

Q5

How did you come to believe that Jesus died for your sins?

Ah…it’s a very good question. I believed Jesus Christ died for me because by virtue of what Adam and Eve did in the garden of Eden, we are born sinners. God had a very good plan with the first people. He wanted to have a good relationship with them. But because our forefathers Adam and Eve decided to disobey God, God started to work on a plan, how to bring this back.

So, being born from a woman, I knew I am a sinner, but God did a great deal, like what we see in Ephesians 2. If we read that from verse 1 up to verse 10, I think verse 1 up to verse 3 introduce the life of unsaved person, what does He do? Through grace, and I said, that grace, I’m within that, because Jesus Christ died for me.

And because Jesus Christ died for me, what should I do? I need to say, “Thank you God for sending Jesus Christ to die for me,” because I was worthy to be punished. But through what Jesus Christ did on the cross, I need to do something so that whatever I got, other people have also to get, sure.

Q6

What is your favorite thing about Malawi?

I like very much God’s creation. Like, where I am serving right now, it’s a mountainous place. But the way I see those mountains, how they were created, I feel it’s really great. Like, there is certain preaching point whereby it’s like a stadium. There’s a very, very small ground, but it’s being faced by mountains.

So, always when I go there, I see the greatness of God. How could God try to create the fence, as people trying to make fence, brick fence, but God made that fence of the mountains. So, how God created different places in Malawi, it’s very wonderful—I really appreciate it. God cares for our country and has really beautified it, sure.

Q7

What are some things you would like people to pray for?

I would like people to pray for… like here in Malawi, with the tendency, with the habit of poverty, we are… maybe good at copying things which doesn’t really praise God. It might be something coming in. So Christians, if we cannot wake up, we may regret it in the future.

So people have to pray for Malawi, that we shouldn’t take things which we don’t understand—even the issue which is coming maybe from the West as well, these marriages, man to man, woman to woman. We have to understand, what does the Bible say about this?

So if people could pray for these issues, the current issues, it’s really pathetic in our country. So, pray for things which can bring confusion in the future, like those marriages, gay marriages, the poverty issue; people have to be equipped so that they can get the support from whatever they are doing, not just getting from the people which they don’t understand.

Q8

What are some things about CAPA that you are thankful for?

Ah, CAPA is doing a lot, because I cannot select that “this is good, this is good, this is good, that is bad,” but… I wish God to bless CAPA, bless the people who are facilitating like yourself [the interviewer], the donors who are doing a great job—may God continue to inspire and guide them so that they can get the best sources.

This CAPA program shouldn’t just run for some few years—many people have to benefit from this, and I am eager to say that if possible, I can continue to see that CAPA standard has to live like here. I need to be there as well. And I am sure I will continue to be where CAPA say, “We need our students to come up [to] this level.” If God allows, I need to do that, sure.