HOW WE MET, CHRISTINE CHISHA, Lusaka
â€œOUR faith in God, love for each other and trust has been our source of strength and foundation in our 30 years of marriage. We have developed a solid bond and we have no reason to doubt each other.
â€œWe started our love relationship based on respect and trust. Trust in the lord and in each other has seen us clock 30 years of ecstasy godly marriage.â€
These are the words of Paul Bupe and his wife Catherine. The couple believes marriage is an exclusive relationship, a total union between male and female understood in the context of one flesh.
â€œOur marriage has been good because we understand the headship of a man and we have agreed that a man should create a room for a woman to fully develop in the area of their callingâ€.
Dr Bupe and wife Catherine have been married for 30 years; they met in Mufurila at the Alan Temple church. The two were members of a youth and prayer warrior group.
The two met for the first time in 1983 when Catherine was admitted at a mine hospital in Mufulira. Dr Bupe was a member of the church prayer group that went to minister at the hospital where Catherine was admitted.
The two did not think much about their encounter after that. However, Catherine upon recovery decided to join the youth prayer group where she developed a friendship with Dr Bupe.
For Dr Bupe, marriage was not on his mind until he decided to go into ministry to become a pastor.
â€œI later decided to go into ministry because I wanted to become a pastor. It was then that I was advised by my pastor to find a wife. My pastor then suggested Catherine as a woman I should consider bringing into my life as my wife,â€ he said.
Not knowing how to approach Catherine about what he had been advised by his pastor, Dr Bupe decided to put his proposal into a letter about his intentions for her.
At the time Catherine was pursuing an accounts course at Evelyn Hone College. However, although she received and read the letter, she opted to remain silent and not respond.
â€œWhen I received his letter, I ignored it. Not because I was not interested in him or his proposal but because I felt it was important to speak to him in person. So I waited until I went back to Mufulira on holiday,â€ Catherine said.
After the two met and discussed, they started courting. The couple courted for four years before they eventually tied the knot on September 6 1986 in Mufulira.
Catherine said she counts herself lucky to be married to Dr Bupe whom she described as a Godly man, passionate about his work, a good father and handsome.
She said Dr Bupe is also a good nurse when she falls sick and caring.
Dr Bupe said, â€œI owe the success of my ministry to Catherine, am the General Overseer of the Redeemed Methodist Church and I oversee churches in Zambia, Rwanda and Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).â€
â€œWe have no bosses in this family, we work together, and we have also helped each other raise our four children. If there was something to be done around the house, we take care of it. Itâ€™s a hand-in-hand situation.â€
Dr Bupe and Catherineâ€™s children live in the United States (US) because they lived with them there for ten years while they returned to serve the Lord.
Dr Bupe said he was thankful to God because he has blessed him with a woman who understands his job.
â€œPastoral work is demanding and Catherine has always been there taking care of the children, she is truly complimentary to my work. We have come to know each other well. I told Catherine that I loved her even if i had no money and I sleep on the floor,â€ he said.
The couple said they were mentored by Reverend Peter Pius Mwenya and his wife of African Methodist the couple they said guided them well, â€œWe had fellowship in there, their hospitality was tremendous and we learnt a lot from themâ€.
Dr Bupe and Catherine said, â€œWe have been able to give out and we have wedded more than 30 couples and counselled many people, we feel duty bound and we are in the process of opening a center called Bupe family services. The center will be providing family counselling, marriage counselling, and other counselling at different levelsâ€.
Dr Bupe said it has become a big concern were people are successful in the jobs and careers but failing to manage their homes. Corporate leaders feel helpless and fail to build homes and they want to be of help.
The family therapy will include children and parents to help build united families, because family is the basis of a good foundation of a country.
â€œThe emotions affects everyone at home, hence the need to understand the dynamics of families to help how to relate with each another and how a family can study the word together,â€ they said.
The couples favourite scripture is John 3:16 – For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
HOW WE MET, CHRISTINE CHISHA, Lusaka