CHIPATA Diocese Bishop George Lungu’s statement on the stance taken by the Church to decline the government’s church empowerment fund has been read in all the Catholic churches across Eastern Province.
Diocesan judicial vicar Evans Miti, who read the statement during morning mass at St Anne’s Cathedral, said the Church would not be intimidated in promoting the common good.
Fr Miti said the Church wants to see a united and peaceful country.
He said even in families there were families that were united in both good and bad times and there were other families that were divided.
“God is inviting ourselves to unite ourselves or anchor ourselves or configure ourselves to that cross of the resurrected Christ. As I speak about this issue, I would like to challenge people out there who are still leading a life that does not please God at all, no unity, no love,” he said.
“We have such kind of people, first Christians themselves and even the politicians themselves, those that have amassed wealth so much that they don’t care about the plight of the people who are suffering and the poor.”
Fr Miti also said there were also good politicians who can share what they have with others.
“We thank those good politicians but there are others their first desire and sole purpose is to amass wealth so much at the expense of the poor. We see them going round manipulating people advocating for things that are not for the common good of the people,” he said. “You will see at the end of mass; I will read the letter which my dear Lord Bishop George Lungu has written so that we understand. We don’t care whether they are going to intimidate us. What we want is the common good of the people, the preferential option for the people.”
Fr Miti said the Church want to advocate justice and peace adding that peace was not only the absence of war.
He said there was no need for the country to be divided on tribal and ethnic lines.
“As I speak right now, our country is divided. There are others who want to make a mileage for their political expedience through tribal lines. What we are preaching is peace, we want peace in this country. Don’t look at culture, tribe and tradition – those are useless things. Let’s look at ourselves as Zambians – One Zambia, One Nation. Even if others are advocating it hypocritically, we are one and yet we see them divide and rule. Let us be united as a nation. I don’t care what kind of political affiliation you are in whether PF, UPND, NDC,” Fr Miti said. “We have seen some leaders without values at all, they will tell us this the other time they change because they want money. We know it! Pray for them, they are desperate people. We know good leaders are there in PF, in UPND, in FDD, in NDC. We know them but bamuselela kwakaba we also know them. You mean you don’t see them? They are trying to divide the nation. Today they will tell you this, tomorrow they will say – ‘I have changed the stance because I wanted to see what was there’, be serious!”
He said the Bishop’s letter was addressed to all Catholics in Chipata Diocese and not other churches.
“Take note please that the Bishop is speaking on behalf of the Catholic Church and he is speaking on behalf of his Diocese not on behalf of any other church or any organisation. He is speaking to his Christians, so this letter is directed to you the Christians and not to anyone else. We don’t want to hear noise from other so-called pastors ‘no this Bishop, this and that’, no,” said Fr Miti.