After a three-year pandemic pause, Jehovah’s Witnesses in Zimbabwe have chosen Harare, among other places around the country to host its global three-day event, the 2023 “Exercise Patience”! Convention.
Prior to 2019, winters across Zimbabwe were marked by Witnesses filling various rented places for their annual conventions.
In 2020, the pandemic interrupted that tradition across the globe as Witnesses held their convention programmes as virtual events in more than 500 languages.
Beginning next week on June 9, however, the Witnesses will bring that tradition back in most parts of the nation.
“As much as we loved the convenience and quality of our virtual conventions, nothing can replace being together in a large group setting,” said Rodrick Nchenga, local spokesman for Jehovah’s Witnesses.
“While our online conventions reached millions around the world and kept our communities safe, we long to get back to our joyful fellowship at these large gatherings.”
Some 6 000 conventions will be held worldwide as part of the 2023 “Exercise Patience”! Convention series.
In Zimbabwe alone, more than 60 conventions will be held in several host cities and rural areas.
From Friday through to Sunday, six convention sessions will explore the quality of patience, highlighting its modern-day relevance through scriptural examples.
The highlight on Friday is a presentation on how people can learn to exercise patience to help them reach their goals. A live baptism will be performed following the Saturday morning session and a feature drama will be featured in two parts during the Saturday and Sunday afternoon sessions to help society see how they can deal with challenges and learn to wait on Jehovah.
Other talking points include “How can showing patience help you improve your relationships with family and friends?, and if one prays to God for help, what can they expect?”
A Bible-based talk “Will God Act in Your Behalf?” will answer these and other pertinent questions.
“Patience is a beautiful quality that all Christians desire to display in their daily lives,” Nchenga said.
“Despite our good intentions, however, maintaining patience in the face of life’s many challenges can be a daily struggle. Spending three days exploring aspects of this quality will be very timely for all of us.”
Jehovah’s Witnesses have been holding public conventions in stadiums, arenas, convention centres, and theatres around the world for more than 100 years.
After resuming smaller in- person meetings and their public ministry during 2022, the summer of 2023 marks the first time they will gather at much larger regional events around the world since the lifting of pandemic restrictions.
Locally other conventions will be held in Bulawayo, Binga, Chitungwiza, Gweru, Kwekwe, Masvingo, Gokwe, Chinhoyi, Karoi, Magunje, Hwange, Gwanda, Marondera, Mutare, Kadoma, Mahuwe, Bindura, Guruve, Checheche, Rusape, Mutasa, Mt Darwin, Beitbridge, Mukumbura, Tongogara and Murambinda, among other places.