Rebecca Nkango was born in 1899. Both she and her husband, Elkana Galamula of Kijima, were choir singers. They were blessed with a number of children, some of whom are singers in various choirs of the AICT.
Anna Njuka, a retired evangelist living in Mwanza, stated that Rebecca was a servant of God who spent her life teaching Bible studies in primary schools, Sunday schools, Christian women’s groups, and Small Group Bible Studies (S.G.B.S). She also used to sing with AIC Kijima choir.
Rebecca Nkango was the first woman in the AICT to join Bible Studies. She undertook the one-year course program in Kijima Center for Bible Learners, known as “Lunashi,” a word that was mistakenly pronounced by the Wasukuma.
Rebecca’s dedicated life, faith, testimony, eagerness in Bible teaching, and preaching influenced many people everywhere she went. According to Anna’s testimony, Rebecca was faithful to God in using her talents to glorify Him and His Church. She was honest and possessed a commendable courage that allowed her to deal with any class of people.
Mzee Gwabo, a retired AICT pastor in Kijima says, “Rebecca was younger than me by about ten years. As a teenager, she used singing and dancing in traditional dances. When she was baptized in the midst of the 1930s, she joined the church choir. She was of great influence in every aspect of her life.”
I met Rebecca when she was in Kolandoto Hospital for a crucial treatment. She was not able to talk properly, but she managed to encourage me to keep with the Lord’s Ministry without blaming those who don’t serve God. She said, “…we are in God’s Ministry according to His will, not of ourselves.” She was quoting John 15:16.
Rebecca went away to be with Christ when she was 83 years old. “‘Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on!’ “Yes,” says the Spirit, “so that they may rest from their labor for their deeds follow them.” (Rev. 14:13)
Joseph N. Gisayi
Anna Njuka, interview by the author, October 2002, Makongoro, Mwanza.
Rev. Jonathan Gwabo of Kijima, interview by the author, 1982, Kolandoto, Shinyanga.
This article, submitted in 2003, was written by Rev. Joseph N. Gisayi, 2003-2004 Project Luke fellow, a minister in the AICT for the past twenty-four years, as well as a member of the Africa Inland Executive Council and chairperson of the AICT Mission and Evangelism Department. This article was reviewed and approved by AICT bishop Peter Kitula, David N. M. Nghosha, historian of the Africa Inland Church Tanzania and by Stephen Kapongo, coordinator of AICT Department of Mission and Evangelism.