The Republic of Zambia is a nation which lies in the heart of southern Africa. Formerly the British colony of Northern Rhodesia, it obtained its independence on October 24, 1964. The people of Zambia are most concentrated within the Copperbelt Province in the northwest and in the capital city of Lusaka in the south. Though the country is rich in natural resources (most notably copper), its infrastructure is highly undeveloped, and approximately seventy percent of its population lives below the national poverty line. Zambia is a representative democracy with a multi-party system of government in which the president serves as both head of state and head of government. Zambia’s last few presidents have created policies that are now furthering the country’s economic reform and progression, though like many other African nations, it still struggles with the strain of AIDS-related issues.
Zambia has a rich history of missionary efforts to reach its eighty people groups, including the activities of pioneer missionary David Livingstone in the mid-1800s. Its people, which are predominately from Bantu tribal groups, are made up mostly of professing Christians (eighty-seven percent), with slightly more than twenty-five percent claiming to be Evangelical. While there are numerous challenges facing the Zambian church, the future remains bright and hopeful. Strategic church-planting efforts have been made throughout the country, especially in the centers of population, and now there are numerous healthy, vibrant churches throughout the country. This concentration on church planting has begun to spill over into other African nations, as well as the rural, tribal areas of Zambia. The Church now finds itself in need of renewed vigor as an older generation of faithful pastors and missionaries pass the baton to fresh faces.
Sources: Wikipedia and Operation World