Government says the Nkhoma Synod pastoral letter released on Sunday was not written in good faith, arguing it is a result of discontent, according to a report in The Nation of Tuesday, April 03, 2012.
Capital Hill argues that the letter is from a disgruntled group that is crying for an unfulfilled K10 million pledge by President Bingu wa Mutharika.
In her first reaction to the pastoral letter, which was read in Nkhoma Synod’s 150 congregations in the Central Region, Information and Civic Education Minister Patricia Kaliati, who is the official government spokesperson, said on Monday that the letter “exposes a nepotistic, opportunistic and tribalistic side of the synod.”
Kaliati, argued the CCAP church should emulate Jesus Christ in providing solutions to every challenge highlighted, instead of focusing on the personality of the President and issues that would split the country.
“We expect them to understand the Bible well. Jesus Christ, when He went to a wedding in Cana, and was told that there was no wine, He did not go and write a letter. He turned water into wine immediately to offer solutions. The [Nkhoma Synod] letter does not offer any solution,” Kaliati is quoted as arguing.
The minister said by including the issue of K10 million pledge in the pastoral letter, the synod has indicated it is more motivated by the delayed money than addressing real issues.
“They cannot sit down and write about money in a pastoral letter. They seem to like to be crying for the money. One can easily conclude that if they were given the money, they could not have written the letter. They have channels they could have used to send reminders to the Head of State, [but] not in a pastoral letter,” she said.
The Mulanje West parliamentarian observed that the synod has for a long time maintained silence at crucial times, including during the era of the founding President the late Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda and his successor, Bakili Muluzi.
She said the synod should have appreciated that the Mutharika administration has invested a lot in the Central Region.
Kaliati said from the early missionaries who explored Malawi such as Dr. David Livingstone, it was known that the country does not have fuel reserves and that churches should focus on providing solutions to the challenges instead of amplifying them.
In the pastoral letter—entitled Exercising our Faith through Prayer in our Time, in our Nation—Nkhoma Synod, which quotes Matthews 5 verses 13-16 as its guiding principle, notes that there are very are very few good things happening in the country, with a lot of pain being experienced by the citizenry due to poor governance, nepotism and selfish government decisions