At a time when the church is being credited for the recent wave of protests against injustice, corruption and poor service delivery, some section of the Christian community has come down hard on the clergymen fronting these movements.
Addressing a media briefing during a tour of the Ministry of Tourism and Hospitality Industry offices , pastors from different, smaller churches blasted men of the cloth who are the ring leaders campaigns such as #thisflag which is led by exiled Pastor Evan Mawarire. They distanced themselves from these campaigns which they described as retrogressive to the development of the nation and detrimental in the marketing of the country.
Tahillar Christian Network (TCN) founder and Leader, Reverend Sam Malunga said more needs to be done in marketing the country rather than denouncing the little efforts being done by the government to resuscitate the ailing economy
“We have been seeing a lot of unnecessary protests going on lately and they started with some cleric but if we look around, there is nothing to protest about, rather we as the church, should be celebrating because we enjoy so much freedom.
“There is nowhere in the world were you will find freedom of worship than the one we have in Zimbabwe. It is through this government that we have such freedom to pray and start our own churches,” said Reverend Malunga while adding that such efforts must be applauded.
The strong admirer of President Mugabe’s leadership said it is the duty of the church to sit, talk and negotiate with government in times of needy. He said it is their duty to give spiritual guidance and counselling to government officials rather than denouncing them publicly.
He urged the church to desist from inciting citizens to turn against government but rather come up with positive and sustainable solutions to the challenges facing the country.
Another cleric, Apostle Quinton Simbarashe called upon all churches to unite and hold a national day of prayer under the banner PRAY FOR MY ZIMBABWE in order to call upon God to intervene during these trying times
“It is only prayer that is going to bring Zimbabwe back on its feet and there is no need for us to be urging citizens to protest. Let us stand in prayer and we will see a change.
“I call upon all pastors across all denominations to come together and pray for our nation so that we achieve greatness,” said the youthful Apostle.
In his response, Minister of Tourism and Hospitality Industry Dr Walter Mzembi said his Ministry’s department of Religious Tourism appreciates the message of peace which is best suited to market the country.
“It is heartwarming when the church fights in the same corner with government in order to bring about positive change.
“We appreciate the message that you carry and we hope for engagement between government and the church as well as its citizens. We condemn violence in strongest terms, and when the church comes us to assure us that they are on our page, we really appreciate that effort,” said the Tourism Minister while emphasizing that the door remains open for any discussion between government and the church.