THE Zambia Episcopal Conference (ZEC) has welcomed MMD’s call for dialogue to resolve contentious issues which have brought unnecessary tension between the ruling party and the Church mother body.
ZEC spokesperson Paul Samasumo said in an interview yesterday that the organisation has always been open to dialogue and is ready to meet with the ruling party.
Father Samasumo’s statement follows MMD national secretary Richard Kachingwe’s call for the MMD and the Catholic church to dialogue and resolve the misunderstandings between them.
“ZEC always welcomes dialogue of this nature and I am sure that the conference will be happy to hear this,” he said.
Bishop Samasumo urged all Catholics in Zambia to welcome this call from MMD saying anything that promotes peace must be accepted.
Last week, Zambia Episcopal Conference president George Lungu released a pastoral letter addressed to all Catholic Parishes in Zambia, to be read out to parishioners on June 5.
In the letter, Reverend Lungu said among other issues that the Catholic Church will remain non-partisan on politics.
He also said the church does not promote gay rights because homosexuality and lesbianism are seriously wrong and sinful acts.
Rev Lungu also called for peace, forgiveness and reconciliation.
And Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia (EFZ) executive director Pukuta Mwanza says his organisation is pleased that the MMD is planning to meet with the ZEC.
Reverend Mwanza said he hopes the meeting will be constructive and that all outstanding issues will be resolved.
He said the meeting will foster unity between government and the church, who are partners in development.
Meanwhile, a senior Lusaka-based legal practitioner, Hobday Kabwe, says the equivocal explanation of the Catholic Church on homosexuality is raising questions among some members of the Catholic Church, including himself, because they are similar to Patriotic Front president Michael Sata’s position on the matter.
Mr Kabwe said the pastoral letter, which will be read in all Catholic Churches on Ascension Sunday, is expected to clearly state the position of the church on homosexuality and that ZEC president George Lungu is also expected to use his role as preacher of salvation, reconciliation and forgiveness.
[Zambia Daily Mail]