Joseph Madziyire needed US$100 000 to meet Bishop TD Jakes

Fatima Bulla - Religion Affairs Editor
When ZimPraise choral group founder Joseph Madziyire initially attempted to link with the Bishop of Potter’s House, Thomas Dexter Jakes, a local middleman demanded US$100 000 to arrange things.

But last Sunday the 26-year-old stood proud in Potters’ House in Dallas in the US as Bishop TD Jakes announced that ZimPraise would perform at his annual MegaFest Conference in August.

Madziyire had not paid US$100 000. Bishop TD Jakes saw ZimPraise performing at Bishop John Francis’ Ruach City Church in London and that sealed it for him.

His father and president of AFM in Zimbabwe, Dr Aspher Madziyire, said his son’s breakthrough had shown that God’s ways are above those of man.
Joseph Madziyire needed US$100 000 to meet Bishop TD Jakes
“I don’t know how he got connected to (Bishop TD Jakes). But I hear that when Bishop John Francis came to Zimbabwe last year somehow he caught up with him. And when they toured London they also performed at Bishop Francis’ church. I think Bishop TD Jakes also attended that conference and they eventually got connected…

“But I never thought this will happen because at one time someone in this country had said they could connect us to him for a US$100 000 fee,” Dr Madziyire said.

Dr Madziyire was not always supportive of his son’s music ventures.

“When Daniel, Shadrech, Misheck and Abednego were taken captive their parents never knew they would be rulers of Babylon just because they had been thrown into the fire and gone through the persecution. But at the end of the day the name of God is glorified. God wanted to open the door such that if I needed to invite Bishop TD Jakes to come to Zimbabwe we now have a personal contact. And it will be easy. God does things in his own ways,” Dr Madziyire said.

Just like the Biblical Joseph, this dream began when he was very young, five-years-old in fact, when his father was pastoring the Northend Assembly in Bulawayo.

“In 1989 I was put in an assembly where there were whites only… But the whites were so segregative I was not allowed to preach or touch anything in church.

“My children were not allowed to sing or play in praise and worship. But still they were determined so after church services they made their own drums using cardboard boxes. Then they played emulating what they saw in church.

“They also observed how keyboards were being played,” Dr Madziyire said referring to Joseph and his brother.

An opportunity presented itself when the whites left the church preferring an assembly of their own, leaving Joseph’s brother to play the keyboard.

Joseph would, after school, unlock the door to the church and play the keyboard. When I got the opportunity to go to USA I bought him a keyboard and he would play it in his room. I remember while doing his O-Level I told him to focus on his studies. But he said if he didn’t play the keyboard he couldn’t concentrate. As parents we didn’t know what to do with him,” Dr Madziyire said.

After O-Level, Joseph studied Music in Australia while his parents wondered what kind of career he would pursue upon completion of that degree.

Joseph came back in 2008 when Zimbabwe was experiencing an economic downturn.
Potter’s House Bishop, Thomas Dexter Jakes (left) chats to ZimPraise founder Joseph Madziyire in USA last week
“Before he returned we told him not to come back but he insisted. That is when he formed the group ZimPraise. As parents we didn’t understand until he began to record and do live performances.

“It’s so tough for him to manage that group: he needed the moral, spiritual, family and financial support. But he is so brilliant in creating things and he has a clear a vision of where he wants to go,” enthused Dr Madziyire.

And now Dr Madziyire is looking foward to accompanying his son to the MegaFest Conference, and annual revival that draws more than 100 000 people to the Potter’s House.

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