Why televise confessions?

It is with confusion that I watch people captured emotionally praying to their God on television, some crying or falling down, as preachers apparently cast out demons.very time I see people publicly confessing their sins before men of God on television, I can’t help wondering if it is right for churches to broadcast such personal moments to multitudes of  viewers.

Recently, a local television showed a man of God praying for a woman who was in a sitting position on the church’s floor.  In the course of the prayer, the man of God decided to hold the woman’s feet and moved them up and down as he prayed expressively.

While the prophet was busy praying and casting demons out of the middle-aged woman, she was struggling to hold her skirt in position— trying to preserve her dignity!

A prophet doing his 'work'

A prophet doing his ‘work’

I am aware that every denomination has its own ways of doing things, with members joining on voluntary basis, but as a television viewer, I could not help asking why I was being shown this drama, of what benefit it could be to the Christian community and the damage it did to the woman’s reputation.

Imagine a mother, wife or sister being put in such a compromised position in front of not only worshippers, but strangers scattered nationwide watching this theatrical episode in their living rooms.

The act of confessing one’s sins is biblical and for some people, it can be done publicly in churches, but should it really be shown on television? Why should the whole world know if someone confessed about their witchcraft or promiscuous acts, for example?

Would viewers respect such people? Wouldn’t such individuals end up suffering social harm such as segregation by people who don’t share the belief that their sins ended at confession?

It is actually very doubtful if, before filming these moments, the church leaders bother at all to get subjects’ permission to have the proceedings on tape and further distributed to masses of people.

While such religious programmes surely help in building the names of the men of God and their churches, this is done at the expense of the unsuspecting Christians who confess their sins or lay their lives bare in front of cameras. Meanwhile, church leaders are hardly concerned about what happens to these members after millions of people are forced to invade their private lives.

In an effort to reach out to masses with the word of God, churches have to obviously find creative ways of publicity, but this should not include taking advantage of ignorant and unsuspecting congregants, who are unlikely to question church leaders on matters such as these.

  • This article appeared on ‘My Thought’ column – NPL
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