Zambia

HOLY WAR: Bishop John Mambo Breathes Fire On Archbishop Alick Banda

The question of homosexuality is a troubling issue that has dogged societies and particularly churches for ages

By Bishop John Mambo

I have read the statement issued by my brother Archbishop Alick Banda of Lusaka Archdiocese with astonishment and I am further perplexed and don’t know whether to term it theological, doctrinal or political.

The question of homosexuality is a troubling issue that has dogged societies and particularly churches for ages. Taking a rather simplistic approach laced with veiled partisan political undertones demeans the criticality of the subject. This is a serious matter and of great concern. Homosexuality threatens and knocks at every family door, walks in every street corner and begs for a hearing and salvation at every Church pulpit. The Church must therefore help than pour scorn!

On his return flight from the 2013 World Youth Day in Brazil, Pope Francis made his now famous statement: “If a person is gay and seeks out the Lord and is willing to, who am I to judge?”

My own personal interpretation of the Holy Father is that sin must be condemned in its entirety, but the sinner must be given the human dignity and love he deserves as a creature of God. That is not to mean sin should be embraced.

“Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?”

“No, Lord,” she said.

And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”

This is the doctrine my brother Archbishop Alick Banda should be championing. The doctrine of love, repetence and forgiveness, not of hate, bitterness and the stereotypes. Not a doctrine of animosity against a politician we don’t support, nor the divisive theologies that turn citizens against each other.

Until Archbishop Banda begins to look inwards with the same passion and intensity he looks at the outside, accusations of partiality will follow him. Like many other churches that are grappling with sin, the Catholic Church has challenges that the Pope himself has acknowledged and in some cases has apologised to entire indegenous and vulnerable communities and victims, without looking for a President to apportion blame.

We have challenging issues of celibacy and priests abusing the vulnerable they swore to protect. At home here we have priests that were willing to help in rigging an election to ensure their party of preference carries the day. These were priests under Archbishop Bishop Banda’s stewardship. Did he speak against this injustice and criminality? Did he speak out for hundreds of Zambians that perished during the gassing?

It is on record that President Hakainde Hichilema has repeatedly stated that he abhors homosexuality and that there are adequate laws to address it. How else should he address it other than through the realms of the rule of law that is already provided for by the constitution. To expect the President to comment on every incident of every crime smacks of ulterior motives and a hidden agenda by his accusers.

Can you let President Hakainde Hichilema work to emancipate the people from poverty. Keeping him busy on matters that are adequately covered by law takes away valuable time from critical issues that affect all citizens.

Bishop John Mambo
Chikondi Foundation

[ Source : Zambianobserver.com]

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