Samuel Machitani Mulate was one of the first converts of the International Holiness Mission and was their first church leader to found churches in Mozambique.
As a small boy in a non-Christian home in Mozambique his mother was dying. The efforts of the traditional doctor had failed and she was lying in a hut all alone. Samuel went in and she asked for water. He was afraid and ran out of the hut. Again he entered the hut and she pleadingly requested water and for him to move her wooden pillow. Again he ran out and the next time he entered she had died. Afterwards his conscience troubled him greatly over this.
He became a Christian while working in Joni (Johannesburg) on the mines. He wandered from the Lord but, while living in a compound near Benoni (East Rand), he heard Christians testifying in a room near his own. He went to the mission hall at Ferguson. At the altar he wept and returned to God. Mulate became a zealous witness for the Lord and a leader among the Christians. Often he would pray alone. He was the first of the new converts to find the experience of holiness. This new relationship with God filled him with joy.
Once he completely forgot the time. It was against the rules to be out of the mine compound after a certain time at night. While kneeling alone where he was praying he felt the cut of a rhino-hide whip across his back. An African policeman shouted, “What are you doing here at this time of night?” He struck him again and again as they walked back to the compound. Mulate never answered a word. The next morning his back and arms were swollen and his whole body was sore. With a happy smile he later testified about it, “That night my heart and body were so full of the glory of God that I did not feel the punishment.” He led his brother Johane Mulate to the Lord.
A year later in 1913 he returned home to Moiene, in the Chibuto District. He and his brother soon gathered a little band of Christians around them and they built a neat daub-and-wattle church building. Samuel Mulate worked faithfully through many years for the Master. He studied his Bible and had an unusual grasp of the truth of scriptural holiness. He was truly a man of God, humble, prayerful and full of zeal right to the end.
Pastors Samuel and Johane established many other churches in the surrounding areas. Then in 1923 both Pastor Samuel Mulate and his brother Johane died of miners’ phthisis. Samuel’s wife Abressa went to live on the mission at Chaimite as Mulate’s non-Christian brother tried to take her as his second wife (according to Shangaan custom).
Paul S. Dayhoff
Rev. and Mrs. I. E. Dayhoff, Missionary Vicissitudes, (Cincinnati, OH: God’s Bible School and Revivalist, 1938), 68.
E. M. Jones, report.
H. K. Bedwell, Black Gold: The Story of the International Holiness Mission in South Africa, (Cape Town: Cape Times Limited, 1936), 51-52.
Mrs. D. B., Reginald and Harold Jones, David Jones: Ambassador to the Africans, (Kansas City, MO: Beacon Hill Press of Kansas City, 1955), 74-78.
This article is reproduced, with permission, from Living Stones In Africa: Pioneers of the Church of the Nazarene, revised edition, copyright © 1999, by Paul S. Dayhoff. All rights reserved.