Saturday, March 24, 2012

Church should avoid double standards - Rev Mwitwa

Church should avoid double standards - Rev Mwitwa
By Ernest Chanda
Sat 24 Mar. 2012, 12:59 CAT

A MANSA clergyman says the Church should avoid playing double standards and give hope to the hopeless.

Reverend Kelvin Mwitwa from the Methodist Church said there were clergymen who could not stand with the Catholic Church when the MMD government attacked it but had now resurfaced to be champions.
"The church as a mirror of society should stand for the truth and avoid playing double stands. In the run up to the September 20th tripartite elections, the MMD government had declared war of insults against the Roman Catholic bishops and priests. Conspicuously, the other church motherbodies remained mute over the matter. To them it was business as usual," Rev Mwitwa said in an interview.

"The Roman Catholic or Zambia Episcopal Conference must be commended for their resoluteness; they absorbed the heat of insults with such tremendous humility, ready to forgive all those who persecuted them. They didn't abandon the poor in the fight against injustice. Today, we are talking about the change which did not come through those who were comfortable and unconcerned but through those who shared in the suffering of the Zambian people. Undoubtedly there has been a crack in the body of Christ which must be mended so that once more the three church mother bodies should continue working together in harmony."

Rev Mwitwa said the church was the biggest constituency in the country and the government could not afford to do away with it.

He said the government could only do away with church leaders who are greedy, corrupt and practice trickery.

"And when such leaders are sidelined, they should not drag the Church into confrontation with the government. I can only pray and appeal to the government not to judge the Church by the performance of some of its leaders but accord the Church its special place in the governance of the nation, provide open communication channels to facilitate dialogue with all those who are ready and willing to contribute to the development of our country," he said.

"Admittedly, corruption can be in any sector of our society, but the corruption that we saw in the MMD government was unprecedented such that any serious government fighting corruption should start from there and that should not be seen as persecution."

And Rev Mwitwa said the Church should continue to pray for peace in the manner it prayed prior to last year's general election.

"The Church should pray even in times of peace, praying for prosperity in the nation and wisdom for the leadership. And when the Church prays or gives to the poor, there is no need to blow its trumpet. As the Bible says, 'do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing'," said Rev Mwitwa.

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