AGENDA FOR August 2011 MMN CONFERENCE (updated 8/08/11)



3:30 - 7:30 P.M. {Wyndham Garden Hotel - Lobby}
5:30 - 6:00 P.M. {Lake Austin Room} Gathering
6:00 - 7:00 P.M. Dinner
7:00 - 8:30 P.M. Welcome & Worship [Helen Zimba, Tom O'Meara, Rev. Coulter]
Shepherd of the Hills Choir
Philippians 1:3-6, "We thank God for our partners..."
8:30 - 8:45 P.M. Gathering Activities   - Julie Burton & Phyllis Wezeman
8:45 P.M.  Instructions for the next day - Helen Zimba
9:00 P.M. First Timers Orientation - Julie Burton


7:30 - 8:30 A.M. {Highland Lakes Ballroom}
8:45 - 9:10 A.M.
Prayer and Worship  led by Rev. Greg McDonell, Central Presbyterian Church, Austin, TX
9:10 - 10:10 A.M.
Keynote - Rev. Chilapula, Deputy Moderator, Blantyre Synod, CCAP
10:10 - 10:25 A.M.
10:25  - 11:25 A.M.
Workshops for:
    1. Introduction to Malawi Language (Chichewa) - Caswell Mhango
    2.  Introduction to Malawi Culture - Helen Zimba, Mary Mpande & Rev. Otis Smith
    3. "CCAP Health Ministries - Hope and Healing in Malawi" - Gail Bingham and Pam Ator
11:30  - 11:45 A.M. AND
11:50 A.M. - 12:05 P.M.
Breakouts for Agency Presentations
    1. Africa Bags - Holly and Todd Petitt
    2. African Connection of the National Black Caucus - Earline and Otis Smith
    3. Malawi Matters Inc. - Jeremy Namwali & Phyllis Wezeman
12:05  - 1:05 P.M.
Lunch  {Lake Austin Room}
1:15 - 2:00 P.M.
Report from the Denomination - Debbie Braaksma - PC(USA)
2:00  - 3:00 P.M.
Roundtable Discussion 
"Trust and What to Do When It Is Broken" - Todd Pettit, Debbie Braaksma, Rev. Chilapula
3:00 - 3:15 P.M.
3:15 -4:15 P.M.
Workshops for:
    1. Local Fundraising ideas - discussion led by Julie Burton
    2. Malawi History - Jeremy Namwali
    3. Support of Schools - Dorothy McKenzie (in person) and Jodi McGill (by video)
4:15 -4:30 P.M.
4:30  - 5:30 P.M.
Water/Sanitation/Development - Jim McGill - Mission Co-worker
5:30 - 6:00 P.M.
6:00- 7:00 P.M.
7:00 -7:45 P.M.  Synod Breakout Gatherings
8:00 - 9:00 P.M.  Plenary - Synod Reports


7:30 - 8:30 A.M.    {Lake Austin Room}
8:45 - 9:30 A.M. Worship and Address by Rev. David Diercksen - (Pastor, First Presbyterian, Mission, TX)
"What does all this 'doing' have to do with the ministry of Jesus Christ?"
9:35 - 9:50 A.M. AND
9:55- 10:10 A.M.
Breakouts for Agency Presentations
    1. Marion Medical Mission - Jim Nussbaumer
    2. Medical Benevolence Foundation - Pam Ator
    3. PC(USA) International Health & Development- "Healthy Women, Healthy Familes in Malawi"  - Gail Bingham
   4. University of Livingstonia - Rev. Judy Henderson, Eastern Oklahoma Presbytery
10:10 - 10:30 A.M.
10:30 - 11:00 A.M.
View & Discuss Displays
11:00  - 12:00 NOON
Plenary Round Table Discussion
    "Women's Issues" - Rev. Mercy Chilapula , Mary Mphande, Edina Namwali, Helen Zimba; Moderated by Phyllis Wezeman
12:00 NOON - 1:00 P.M.   
1:00 - 2:00 P.M.
Workshops for:
     1. Introduction to Malawi Language (Chitumbuka) - Caswell Mhango
     2. General Mission Support and Denominational funding - Bruce Whearty PC(USA) - remotely
     3. Helping our friends to meet their own goals- discussion led by Ken Gentili
2:00 - 2:15 P.M.
Special Prayer for Partners/Missionaries & laying on of hands
2:15 - 3:00 P.M.
Partnerships Plenary Presentation -  Rev. Debbie Braaksma
3:00 - 3:15 P.M.
3:15 - 4:00 P.M.
Plenary Presentation - "CCAP Partner Consultations & Health Programs in Malawi"
    Frank Dimmock - Public Health Liaison, PC(USA) 
4:00 - 4:45 P.M.
Plenary Presentation - Rotary Water Project on Kondowe Plateau
    Ken and Sylvia Gentili
4:45 - 5:15 P.M.
General Meeting of the Malawi Mission Network
5:15 P.M. - Instructions for Riverboat and Sunday Worship
5:15 - 6:00 P.M. Break
6:00 - 6:15 P.M. 
Leave for Lake Austin Riverboat and Dinner
7:00 - 9:45 P.M. -  
Dinner at Lake Austin
10:00 P.M. - Return to hotel

SUNDAY, August 14, 2011

7:30 - 8:00 A.M.  Check Out of Hotel Room
8:00  - 8:15 A.M.  Depart for Shepherd of the Hills Church (with baggage)
8:45 A.M. Breakfast at Church
9:30 A.M.
Worship at Shepherd of the Hills Presbyterian Church - Rev. Dr. Larry Coulter, Pastor

    Depart to Airport from Shepherd of the Hills


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Reverend Mercy Chilapula
Vice Moderator of the Blantyre Synod of the C.C.A.P
Pastor of Chinamwali C.C.A.P. Congregation in Zomba.
Mercy was born as Mercy Kalipinde and is the mother of two boys.

Rev. Chilapula completed Theology Studies at Zomba Theological College in 1989, and holds a Masters Degree in Theology from the University of Fort Hare, South Africa. 

Upon completion of her studies at Zomba, Mercy was sent to Chigodi Women's Centre in Blantyre, and served as head of women's desk. Chilapula is a spiritual leader who has helped build Malawi through pastorship and has been instrumental in shaping people's lives. She has been pastor of Chinamwali C.C.A.P Congregation in Zomba since she qualified as a reverend. Chinamwali has 50 deacons, 50 church elders and 3 Session clerks.  

Mercy is the first woman in the history of the Blantyre Synod, to hold the position of Vice Moderator. She was placed there by 13 of the 18 presbyteries who voted for her at the Synod's Annual General Meeting in August 2007.  

Rev. Chilapula says those who oppose the appointment of women in higher positions are not gender sensitive because even God is gender sensitive right from the beginning when He created both man and woman in His own image. She sometimes chairs meetings of hundreds of men of God. Chilapula points out that pastorship is as important as any other executive job because one is in community with many people. She advises young women who want to be pastors to take heed of the calling whilst remembering that education is the most important key. To all women, she advises them to be solely dependent on God.

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The Dimmock Family

Frank Dimmock -  Africa Health Liaison for PC(USA)

Frank and Nancy Dimmock have been under appointment as PC(USA) missionaries since June 1 1985, which happens to be the day they were married. In fact, they interrupted their honeymoon to be commissioned during the General Assembly that year.

The Dimmocks’ latest appointment, which began in August 2007, is to Lesotho, where Frank serves as PC(USA)’s Africa Health Liaison. He works with partner churches and ecumenical agencies to develop programs for children. In addition, he coordinates the Christian Health Associations of Africa and is part-time advisor to the Christian Health Association of Lesotho. His work requires him to travel frequently to Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Zambia, South Africa, Cameroon and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

As the first missionary to be named “Africa health liaison,” Frank finds that he is a conduit of ideas among the partners. He calls it “cross-pollinating,” sharing knowledge, experiences and ideas between the countries, such as patient-retained health booklets. The booklets give a patient more knowledge of their own health situation, reduce unnecessary or repetitive tests or treatments, give a health provider a patient’s history at a glance and save lives. Frank has shared samples of these books in Kenya and Zambia as well.


The Dimmocks’ first appointment to mission service was also in Lesotho, where they were assigned to serve at Scott Hospital, a mission hospital in Morija.

After two terms of service in Lesotho, they moved to Malawi in 1992, where Frank became the health coordinator for the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian (CCAP) and began his work as regional health consultant for the PC(USA) in southern Africa. Frank coordinated the CCAP’s health management and administration and facilitated the sharing of ideas and solutions to common problems and concerns. He also assisted with communication among the three synods in Malawi.

Nancy supported this ministry with hospitality through their home and raising their seven children. She also found time to found and coordinate the Crisis Nursery, an orphanage for children whose parents were victims of HIV/AIDS.

“It has been a tremendous blessing to me personally to visit the countries of this region,” writes Frank, “and establish relationships with the various health providers. I have met quite a few saints of every culture and color working with joy and devotion in some very difficult circumstances. It has been a privilege to provide a listening ear to those needing to share about their frustrations and problems. And even without providing solutions, they have been encouraged to have been able to share and to have felt understood. I am convinced of the importance of this job and appreciate the insight of the PC(USA) that recognized the need and potential and made it happen.”

Frank earned a B.S. in botany and zoology at North Carolina State University and an M.P.H. in epidemiology and tropical medicine from Tulane University School of Public Health in New Orleans. He had previously served as a volunteer in mission and later as a mission specialist in public health in Zaire before being appointed as a full-term mission co-worker.

Frank and Nancy are members of Montreat Presbyterian Church in Montreat, North Carolina. They are the parents of eight children, Nathan, Moses, Jessica, Katie, Andrew, Alifa, Isaac and Jackson.