Churches: give thy neighbour peace

The tiff between residents of Ashdown Park in Harare and Heartfelt International Ministries Church whose members the former accuse of disturbing their peace typifies the way some modern-day Christians and their denominations think about fellow human beings.

By Kamurai Mudzingwa

These types of Christians are so self-absorbed that they do not see anything wrong with stamping on other people’s rights in the name of Jesus.

Their world outlook is informed by the “my-religion-is-better-than-your-religion” type of reasoning that does not embrace diversity. But why should everybody be a Christian?

It is an immutable fact that the world is diverse and nothing can change that. We all found it like that and we will leave it like that. History has shown that those who try to fight diversity end up—at worst—as proponents of genocide and other such ills.

Ask Christians what is central to their teaching and they will tell you it is the love for thy neighbour as taught by Jesus in the Bible.

But what kind of love is it that makes one install a PA system in the middle of a residential area, disturbing the peace of others through ‘worship’ or so-called all-night prayers? Is it love that drives one to disturb a neighbour’s peace?

Do these people ever consider that among residents there are many who do not believe in Christianity, but who want their peace? Do they know that there would be students studying for examinations and sick people who require serene environments in some of the homes around their churches?

One reader who reacted to the story on the NewsDay website hit the nail on the head: “Most of these new churches have no respect for residents. This particular church makes so much noise that each time they have sermons the residents can’t just sleep.

Churches should appreciate that we can’t all belong to particular denominations and should give us enough space. Yes, they can do their thing, but please do that quietly and respect other people’s choices. Council must insist on soundproof equipment if any of these churches wants to erect structures in residential areas.

In fact, most of these preachers must be very ignorant and selfish because anyone with a little brain inside would know that preferences differ in this diverse world.” And the reader aptly signed off with the pseudonym Respect.

What is also irksome is that some of these noisemakers are known for presenting fake images of “good Christians” to coat their evil deeds in church apparel, as it were. We have noted how some of the hardest Bible-thumpers are the embodiment of hedonism, judging from crimes such as rape and sodomy they have been accused of.

Not everyone is gullible and those who see through the sham should be allowed their peace.

This un-Christian behavior of disturbing thy neighbour’s peace has become so prevalent that someone has to stop it. Why should noisy Christians be allowed to have their way? It is ironic that most of these people find it attractive to be loud and pious.

And today, the relationship between Christian piety and self-centredness has soared to alarming proportions.

Wouldn’t it be better for these holier-than-thou people to tarry a little and think thus: “If noise is cause of my brother’s unhappiness, I will never install a PA system again,”? But to expect such selfish people to think beyond their religious-inflated egos would be to expect too much from them.

That is why they build mega-churches with imported materials in high density areas reeking of poverty.

The irony escapes them. Or does it escape them or it is deliberate? Because some of these noisemakers, judging from the way they are accused of some of the worst crimes against humanity such as rape, are masters at being wolves in Jesus’ clothing.

In one of these churches I saw only two people — a pastor and a member of the flock and the later was shouting into a microphone to have his voice amplified by the powerful PA system.

The church is right in the middle of a high density area. Maybe that member of his flock had a hearing problem. How else could one explain the use of the PA system?

The sad thing about these noisy neighbours in high density residential areas is that they are now so many that they have to compete among themselves to be heard above the noise they create. Residents, of course, suffer in silence.

But knowing such people and their ilk, if you tell them of the evil in disturbing other peoples’ peace, they are likely to go through the Bible with a fine toothcomb to find a verse to justify their actions. Or simply dismiss you as a person possessed by evil spirits that outnumber the biblical Legion’s.

If they fail to find an appropriate verse, they simply look for one to distort to justify their anti-social behaviour. Since these people, especially their leaders, sell the idea that they are God’s representatives, they tell anyone who criticises their bad conduct towards other citizens as tantamount to challenging God. They forget that they are mere mortals like you and me.

Since it is too much of a moral task for them to understand that making noise and disturbing other people’s peace is immoral, I hope one day the laws of the country will force them to become moral beings by banning their noise- pollution antics.

Do I hear the words: “Hear the devil speaking”?

The tiff between residents of Ashdown Park in Harare and Heartfelt International Ministries Church whose members the former accuse of disturbing their peace typifies the way some modern-day Christians and their denominations think about fellow human beings.

These types of Christians are so self-absorbed that they do not see anything wrong with stamping on other people’s rights in the name of Jesus.

Their world outlook is informed by the “my-religion-is-better-than-your-religion” type of reasoning that does not embrace diversity. But why should everybody be a Christian?

It is an immutable fact that the world is diverse and nothing can change that. We all found it like that and we will leave it like that. History has shown that those who try to fight diversity end up—at worst—as proponents of genocide and other such ills.

Ask Christians what is central to their teaching and they will tell you it is the love for thy neighbour as taught by Jesus in the Bible. But what kind of love is it that makes one install a PA system in the middle of a residential area, disturbing the peace of others through ‘worship’ or so-called all-night prayers? Is it love that drives one to disturb a neighbour’s peace?

Do these people ever consider that among residents there are many who do not believe in Christianity, but who want their peace? Do they know that there would be students studying for examinations and sick people who require serene environments in some of the homes around their churches?

One reader who reacted to the story on the NewsDay website hit the nail on the head: “Most of these new churches have no respect for residents. This particular church makes so much noise that each time they have sermons the residents can’t just sleep.

Churches should appreciate that we can’t all belong to particular denominations and should give us enough space. Yes, they can do their thing, but please do that quietly and respect other people’s choices. Council must insist on soundproof equipment if any of these churches wants to erect structures in residential areas.

In fact, most of these preachers must be very ignorant and selfish because anyone with a little brain inside would know that preferences differ in this diverse world.” And the reader aptly signed off with the pseudonym Respect.
What is also irksome is that some of these noisemakers are known for presenting fake images of “good Christians” to coat their evil deeds in church apparel, as it were. We have noted how some of the hardest Bible-thumpers are the embodiment of hedonism, judging from crimes such as rape and sodomy they have been accused of. Not everyone is gullible and those who see through the sham should be allowed their peace.
This un-Christian behavior of disturbing thy neighbour’s peace has become so prevalent that someone has to stop it. Why should noisy Christians be allowed to have their way? It is ironic that most of these people find it attractive to be loud and pious. And today, the relationship between Christian piety and self-centredness has soared to alarming proportions.
Wouldn’t it be better for these holier-than-thou people to tarry a little and think thus: “If noise is cause of my brother’s unhappiness, I will never install a PA system again,”? But to expect such selfish people to think beyond their religious-inflated egos would be to expect too much from them. That is why they build mega-churches with imported materials in high density areas reeking of poverty.
The irony escapes them. Or does it escape them or it is deliberate? Because some of these noisemakers, judging from the way they are accused of some of the worst crimes against humanity such as rape, are masters at being wolves in Jesus’ clothing. In one of these churches I saw only two people — a pastor and a member of the flock and the later was shouting into a microphone to have his voice amplified by the powerful PA system. The church is right in the middle of a high density area. Maybe that member of his flock had a hearing problem. How else could one explain the use of the PA system?
The sad thing about these noisy neighbours in high density residential areas is that they are now so many that they have to compete among themselves to be heard above the noise they create. Residents, of course, suffer in silence.
But knowing such people and their ilk, if you tell them of the evil in disturbing other peoples’ peace, they are likely to go through the Bible with a fine toothcomb to find a verse to justify their actions. Or simply dismiss you as a person possessed by evil spirits that outnumber the biblical Legion’s. If they fail to find an appropriate verse, they simply look for one to distort to justify their anti-social behaviour. Since these people, especially their leaders, sell the idea that they are God’s representatives, they tell anyone who criticises their bad conduct towards other citizens as tantamount to challenging God. They forget that they are mere mortals like you and me.
Since it is too much of a moral task for them to understand that making noise and disturbing other people’s peace is immoral, I hope one day the laws of the country will force them to become moral beings by banning their noise- pollution antics.
Do I hear the words: “Hear the devil speaking”?

33 Comments

  1. I just feel our laws should protect everyone even the weak in the society. In any case disturbing other people is not good morally and even the bible does not support that. Churches should embrace a moral code that guides their activities so that they apeal to all people. I have seen may churches integrating into the society at the same time converting many sinners, that is why Jesus alowed himself to be hosted by zachaeus. If a church is owned by an individual it ceases to fully represent the values of christianity especially love because the owner will tell the followers to disrespect other people and love the church owner. we have seen many cases of this.

  2. Chirombo Musango

    Iwe nyaya yako yaida last week yapera iyooo nekuti yesterday we had our good services in one of the most highly sound proof arena. You need to be always on the ground for good journalism kwete zvako zvekuunzirwa nyaya padesk.Endapo izvozvi unonyara nenyaya yako yakareba zvisina musoro.

    1. Nehemiah Mavetera

      Really, the new Christian worldview, according to these evangelistic changes does not agree with the norms of a cultured, moral, and respectful society. Please church leaders, attend pastoral studies that are taught and guided by mature citizens in the christian ministry. LOVE THY NEIGHBOUR AS…….?????

      Thank you reporter.

    2. maizviitirei

    3. Yes the complaint is too long and repetitive.To make matters worse the same repetitive complaint had to be replicated.

  3. We have the same problems with wild music shows in Milton Park, with shows at Old Hararians. We want our peace

  4. @Chirombo. Even yesterday we were disturbed by the music and shouting coming from your so-called church. This is really the height of insensitivity

  5. Just go there and pray with them, you will enjoy the show. There was once an alnight party of noisy deliquent people in Ashdown park and nobody raised an issue but when they sing Jesus it becomes bad. Asi vakanzwa “mawaya waya” vanonyarara they don’t complain as if this does not disturb students and sick people, ho zvinovapasisa kana kuvaita kuti vave vatano handiti zvana Tsviriyo yairidzwa ndaizvinzwa ndakarara mumba mangu muna Bingley Drive handizive kuti vaivepi mu Ashdown Park imomo.

    1. Maita and chirombo hamuna nyaya. You are just empty vessels se church yenyu. If those palying tsviriyo are disturbing you its your right to repoer them. So is your church should leave others at peace. 2 wrongs does not make a right. Why go to the extend of buying high voltage speakers and then againg sound proof, kuda kuonererwa. 6 or so small speakes strategically put will do the trick. You need to know the municipality bylaws.

  6. prophet magaya akudawo nezva bev , sure kutenga container rembatya kuti bev aregere kutamba asi agotengesa mbatya mutaundi ??????? Hehede this time tichanzvirira

  7. mwana wemuApostora

    what makes poeples’ lives better, others are waiting to destroy. what kills their lives they celebrate. in this generation without hope and faith you you would expect this. do they really know what has come to their community, do they know the moment they enter into that arena their problems disappear. that arena carries the presence of GOD and those offended we know who they are. where are the women of this community , do they know how many drunkards have given their lives to Christ ever since that church came to this community. Do they know how many job opportunities have been created in their community ever since this church came to their community. to this reporter , i am inviting you for a service tonight and for sure the LORD Jesus through his servant will deliver you from that spirit of drunkeness, womanising and poverty binding you, just to mention a few. Accept Jesus and you will see what he will do to you. we at this church are not even surprised at these comments if it was other things with no power of God non of these complains were going to be heard

    1. Praise your Lord quietly, don’t disturb the peace of the neighbor hood, simpules.

  8. Why can’t you start by making sure the person who have erected a shade and installed a PA system at Mereke ku Warren Park D making a lot of noise for Cold Comfort residency is locked up kuMatapi.

    1. Yeehh!! Vari two napastor wako

  9. A good article.These churches demonise all who do no subscribe to their way of worship but truly they disturb not only people in their homes but other worshippers n neighbouring church buildings who are not so noisy.They need retraining

  10. Hoo nhai kana zvava zveChurch zvonyaudza ,ko kana zviri zvana Zorai butter nana Tsviriyo,ndofunga une dhimoni rekusada kunamata.
    Tendeuka,sorry hako kana ndatuka.

  11. the same with the loudspeaker prayer from that mosque by the flyover munarizende. Why can they not turn down their volume to levels that they only can hear. We are not all moslems and forcing us to hear your prayer is not right.

    1. Please dont judge or insult coz you will surely be judged by God himself

  12. I always wonder where the law enforcement arm of society will be when these people disturb the peace of an entire neighbourhood with deafening noise “in the name Jesus” (By the way, nowhere in the Bible do we read of Jesus disturbing any neighbourhood with the kind of noise that has become synonymous with modern “worship”). When by-laws were by-laws, churches would need to prove and convince the surrounding residents that they would be good neighbours to the residents of a neighbourhood in which they wanted to become a part before being allowed to build or settle in, but lo, that is no more. It is now free for all. I hope someone at Town House reads this article and investigate “wholesale” what is happening to enforcement of By-laws. I for one will always seek protection from the Police if I feel my peace is under threat, never mind from whom, church or band for that matter.

    1. Joe you make a very point about the local by-laws. These actually do cover disturbing the peace however when i did make a report to the city council they referred me to the police who in turn refused to do anything about it. I support the action Ashdown Park residents who took up the matter with the church responsible. As in other areas that affect us lets be proactive!

  13. mwana wemu apostle

    in this life what matters most is who do you listen to, God or people. just like bartmeous the church cant be silenced, wud he speak of the same peace that they want without God, inyope chete dzinorara masikati, evening services end at 8pm, people shud nt pretend to be the victims to invite pity.

  14. Zvekunamata ndoo zvasara. Muchechi munoda kuva lively kuti vanonamata vasanzwe hope. mheremhere kuna Jesu!!!

  15. Aiwa tikwanirei apa. U a jus inconsiderate dats all. i wish it huld happen next to ur house. and stop abusing the bible

  16. Somehow very true.I go to budiriro 3 united methodist.we neighbours to 3 of these new churches its like they vtry to outdo each other in terms of volume. Some of them they will b less than 50 with a full blown PA system

  17. Do a petition and I will be the first to sign
    There is a church in the Bluffhill neighnourhood robbing the residents of their much deserved peace too. Late at night until morning – and PC system as well
    Please research on how and where to report because handina mari yekutenga a house in Borrowdale. This is my house and I am a born again happy clapper christian too – not when the children are sleeping and other residents too. There is a reason why churches are located in certain areas and notices have to be run for weeks in the mewspapers for people to register their disapproval
    Ava vakanyoresa kupi?

  18. These noisy churches should be allocated land far from residential areas

  19. vanhu vedzimbahwe,ityai Mwari.1-Jehova haagari mudzimba dzakavakwa namaoko avanhu 2-Jehova ati muviri yenyu itemberi yangu munogara mweya vaMwari kana munhu achitadza anotadzira temberi yangu unova muviri.Muri papi chaipo kana muchiti munonatata pasina rudo(love).Kudenga nuchaita rekuchezera kuti mupinde kana musingadzoki pazvakaipa zvenyu,tendeukai kwete kukopa kutendeuka.PA system unoida yeyi mune vanhu 30.Mabasa enyu ngaaratidze kunaka kuri muna Jeso ipapo muchatora vese navanokuzvidzai.musatukana munobva pahwaro yekubatsirana uye hatina chatogadzirisa asi tenge tamapenzi.l thank yu

  20. Actually Africa is behind because of its embrace of Christianity where the merits of poverty are taught at length.

    1. Iwe Mweni attend Prophet Angel or Prophet Makandiwa’s churches and immerse yourself in the gospel of prosperity if that is all that you wish from Christianity.

  21. @ mwana wemuApostora, hama yangu tsvaka mwari rwepiri. Kungwaudza vanhu kana kuzvitutumadza zvisina hakusiko kunamata. Denga haripindwi nemanyawiba; KWETE. Chinamato ichi hamusimi machitangaba. Chakatanga kare nedzimwe shasha dziaziva mwari zvomene kwete zvamunoita izvi. John the Baptist carried out his sermons where and how? Peter and the other disciples worshiped the lord in what way? I think the law should be fully applied on your church so that you are brought to sanity. I don’t at all believe in the teachings of the Jehovah’s Witnesses; but there is just one thing which I admire with those people JUST ONE THING: They are very smart, considerate and quiet. Pluck out a leaf out of the way they conduct themselves just that and not their message. Masowe also revise your night prayer sermons. You are very disturbing and causing unnecessary havoc in the townships.

  22. Mhosva iri ku City council….ndivo vano fanira kuchengetdza my by laws. But corruption ikoko makes them issue permits for purpose4s not suitable to the area. They dont care because vais a’dhora muhomwe’ they are not creating open spaces for vana kana ma parks asi selling off to ma churches instead of demarcating suitable land. Some of these churches have services 24/7 with amplified misical instruments. apa wabva kunight shift and you are supposed to rest in your own home built first before the church. Mahachi nevanhu vako please leave office now. Ndimi mune nyaya idzi.

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