James Chimpweya talks to three leaders of Thamanda of Bethsaida Church about the holy water the church uses to heal people. The church leaders are Levi Everson Ngatimala, Pastor Samuel Chimwayi and evangelist Feston Mchere, all from Chimwayi Village, T/A Kapeni in Blantyre.
Â How did the Thamanda Bethsaida Church begin in Malawi?
To be honest with you, we donâ€™t know exactly how the church began because we just joined it in Chileka where the headquarters was. The church was established from John 5 where there is the story of the Pool of Bethsaida. As a church, we believe in holy water for healing. Our church believes in healing because people have been hearing the word of God for a long time, but this time they are looking for miracles. When we bless the water and give it to the sick person they get healed. We have so many examples and testimonies of healing from the holy water.
Would you explain more on the healing process?
What happens is that after sharing the message, we hold healing sessions where the sick come forward to be prayed for. First, the Levites bless the water. They have a white handkerchief which they put on the head of the patient when praying for healing. Thereafter, they give the water to the patients. Through this method, people are being healed.
Where in the Bible do you draw this?
The Bible tells us that Namaan was healed of his leprosy, according to the 1 Kings 5, after he dipped himself seven times in the river Jordan. There was also this person who was sick at the poolside of Bethsaida and was healed as well. This is the background to our church. Healing comes through the faith of the patient and the one praying for them.
Give us a feel of your church services
When we gather on the Sabbath, which is Sunday, we open the service with a dedication prayer where everybody surrenders themselves before God. This is done while songs of worship are being sung. This is total devotion to God.
What happens next?
After the intercession, it is time for songs and choruses. We normally have two preachers before the main preacher comes in, according to 1 Corinthians 14 verse 29. After the sermon, we hold healing sessions before taking offerings.