THE Anglican Bishop of Harare, Chad Gandiya, has urged Zimbabweans to remain steadfast with the hope of an economic turnaround which will change the lives of the impoverished.
In his Easter message, Gandiya said while Zimbabwe’s situation raised doubts of a quick recovery, the nation should remain unwavering in prayer.
Zimbabwe has since last year’s elections experienced an economic downturn that has seen unemployment rising as companies either downsized or closed shop.
“Given the many challenges we have been facing and continue to face here in Zimbabwe, like economic, social, as families, individuals and as institutions including churches, many find it hard to believe that anything really new will happen to change the prevailing situation that has been characterised by many hardships in Zimbabwe,” Gandiya said.
“When we feel this way, we are succumbing to despair. I agree that some situations and contexts raise doubts in us. My brothers and sisters, the real issue of faith in our varied situations is not so much believing in God and in the resurrection of the body after death. It is about believing in the possibilities of God effecting resurrection and newness into our lives and our situations right now.”
In a separate interview, Gandiya said the church would use the Easter holidays to celebrate “resurrection” following a period of exile during which the Harare diocese’s Church of the Province of Central Africa (CPCA) was under the self-imposed leadership of renegade Nolbert Kunonga.
Kunonga, who was excommunicated as CPCA Bishop for Harare in 2008 forcibly, took over control of church properties in the diocese.
He openly declared his allegiance to Zanu PF and President Robert Mugabe.
During the time, CPCA parishioners were forced to conduct church services in the open while some were victimised for resisting Kunonga’s rule.
In November 2012, Kunonga finally lost the five-year protracted struggle for control of the CPCA properties following a Supreme Court ruling to the effect that he had been excommunicated from the Anglican Church and, as such, was no longer entitled to its assets.
“The exile had tried to kill us, but we have resurrected with vigour and a renewed sense of commitment. To me, that is a sign of life coming from a situation of death and we see resurrections taking place throughout the diocese,” Gandiya said.
He reiterated the CPCA’s commitment to assisting vulnerable groups around the country.
Recently, the CPCA donated various goods to families affected by the Tokwe-Mukorsi flood disaster.