By Peter Matika
Prominent Apostolic Faith Mission Church leader Bishop Pumile James Abson Dube (pictured), who died last Thursday has been laid to rest.
He was 101. Bishop Dube, who was known as one of the country’s oldest serving clerics was laid to rest at Old Luveve Cemetery in Bulawayo yesterday.
He is survived by his wife Mrs Emily Dube, four daughters, 29 grandchildren, 63 great- grandchildren and 11 great-great-grandchildren.
Bishop Dube was born on 10 October 1919 in Plumtree. During his teen years, according to his daughter Mrs Lindiwe Dube-Hlabangana, Bishop Dube left the country in search of “greener pastures” in South Africa, where he worked as a general hand.
“His brilliance and commitment in all facets of life belied the fact that he had only gone as far as primary school. He was recommended for pastoral training in the Methodist Church but failed to qualify because of not having attended secondary school.
“He was active in the Methodist Church in South Africa so much that despite his basic education he became a trainer of preachers in the church,” said Mrs Dube-Hlabangana.
Bishop Dube got married in 1953 to his wife Mrs Khethiwe Emily Dube from Witbank, South Africa.
“They then lived in Chiawelo, Soweto. He was very involved in regional politics and became chairman of the Chiawelo Branch of the African National Congress that was proposed in the early 1960s. The street on which their house was located in Chiawelo was named in his honour.
“He continued fervently with church work in the Methodist Church, while he was also formally employed as a sales representative for M Block and Company in Doorfontein, Johannesburg,” said Mrs Dube-Hlabangana.
She said he then returned to Zimbabwe and relocated to Bulawayo with his family.
“He continued to work for the sister branch of M Block. He continued as a preacher in the Methodist Church. Subsequently his wife received a spiritual calling that led her to transition to the St John’s Apostolic Mission of Southern Africa.
“He gave her unconditional support in the founding of the local branch of the church and eventually joined her in the leadership of St John’s AFM in Pumula, where he eventually became bishop in the church,” said Mrs Dube-Hlabangana. Sunday News