Prophets under fire

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THE Evangelical Fellowship of Zimbabwe (EFZ) has expressed alarm and concern over cases of rape, as well as unethical and immoral conduct against some leaders of churches and the clergy.

STAFF REPORTER

In a statement yesterday, EFZ said while many of the accused were not affiliated to the organisation, their actions tarnished the overall image and reputation of the church.

“Unethical and immoral acts such as rape are themselves unacceptable, but become even more reprehensible when perpetrated by those purporting to be custodians of spirituality, morality and integrity,” EFZ said.

“While freedom of worship is a constitutionally guaranteed right and should be enjoyed by all, we urge all Zimbabweans to exercise caution, discernment and due diligence in choosing churches and leaders of churches that are Bible-based and Christ-centred.

“This is especially important in the light of the numerous ‘prophetic’ and ‘prosperity’ churches that have become a trap to the gullible and money-making scheme to others. The EFZ has long expressed its concerns against non-biblical and non-
ethical foundations of many of these churches.”

EFZ called on churches to register either with them or the Zimbabwe Council of Churches and the Zimbabwe Bishop Conference for membership, accountability and transparency.

The organisation said it has a clear governance and accountability structures as well as credible codes of ethics and conduct that provide self-regulation and a framework for government liaison.

“Any law that may seek to regulate the church will need to involve the church in general and umbrella bodies in particular and not a particular person.

“We call upon all churches to return to the true biblical standards of leadership, that is, being humble and compliant with biblical principles, accountable to the Christian community and serving the flock without greed, deceit and self-interest,” the organisation said.

EFZ urged “the true church” and its members to maintain high personal, public morals and ethical standards that reflect the character of Jesus Christ.

According to reports, 10 women last week made police reports claiming that RMG Independent End Time Message Church founder Robert Gumbura had allegedly abused them.

Police said preliminary investigations into Gumbura’s alleged sex escapades had unearthed more abuses and suspected occultism practices.

According to Apostolic Christian Council of Zimbabwe president Johannes Ndanga, each time Gumbura raped married
women, he said it was God blessing their marriages.

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