Former First Lady Madam Callista Mutharika who is also President Peter Mutharika special Advisor on HIV and Aids and Safe Motherhood, on Sunday called for more compassion and love to people living with HIV and Aids, saying shame and stigma prevent many people from getting help and “from protecting themselves in the first place.”
The former first lady was speaking during this year’s Catholic Church’s All- Africa Conference of Sister to Sister (AACSS) in the Capital City Lilongwe.
“Show compassion for those with HIV,” said Callista.
This year’s AACSS theme is ‘HIV and Aids a call to compassion and love’
The meeting started from 1 August and will finish on 8 August this year.
The meeting aims at bringing awareness to the religious women of the three countries of Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
The meeting has drawn sisters from the three countries in helping bringing sisters together in addressing challenges and empower each other to become compassionate.
Callista said “These concepts of peace, love and liberation are not foreign to the Catholic experience, but rather define the very essence of our faith.”
She said religious leaders should not turn blind eye to the realities of the world, saying access to treatment and care are issues of justice.
Others conference speakers agreed.
Speaking earlier, His Grace Bishop Montfort Sitima said HIV and Aids has affected all the human being regarded of whatever status.
Bishop Sitima said Sisters have great role in achieving HIV and Aids free status.
Sister Juliet Ching’amba of Sister of Child Jesus from Zambia said:”The number of orphans is growing, the number of widows is growing, and HIV and Aids is driving a lot of women into prostitution.”
Families can help turn the AIDS epidemic around, Ching’amba said, simply by supporting their children. Young people who feel accepted and respected are more likely to form healthy relationships, said Ching’amba.
During the meeting there will be a number of presentations from well known HIV and Aids experts.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :