Bishop Magaya not afraid of death threats made by Charamba
Bishop Ancelimo Magaya of the Zimbabwe Divine Destiny (ZDD) church has warned President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s spokesman George Charamba against commenting about spiritual matters saying “you have limited understanding of ecclesiastical matters albeit sarcastically”.
Two weeks ago, the police arrested Magaya while he was in the middle of leading prayers for the country’s peace and prosperity. He was whisked away from his Rotten Row church premises by armed anti-riot officers, who arrested 36 more people in attendance.
In his latest Jamwanda on Saturday article, Charamba lashed at Magaya claiming he was just pursuing political interests rather than evangelical mission.
But Magaya slapped back in a statement on Tuesday saying he was not afraid of the death threats made by Charamba.
“You acknowledge limited understanding of ecclesiastical matters albeit sarcastically. In the milieu of that limited understanding, you assign clerics’ a confined role of interceding for people to access eternity, the only role of which you derive your reverence of the clerics.
“You neither know the scriptures nor the power of God as they relate to the fundamental role of the church on matters of national governance.
“Following your role model, President Mugabe who once retorted that Church leaders must stick to preaching and praying for the distressed and leave politics to politicians, you too speak with authority on a subject matter that you know very little about.
“Find out from authorities on the subject of Church and Politics and learn better,” Magaya said.
The cleric further pointed that his church would not “be pushed aside to watch while the nation is shredded into pieces by those who have subjected themselves to both the vernal and venial of this age just because you deem them to be legitimate occupants of the political space.”
“I will discuss this subject matter in greater detail in the near future and perhaps help you understand why you will definitely hear more from me and many other church leaders whom God will embolden to speak out against socio-economic and political injustice which you are possibly paid to defend..
“You labor very much in your article to demonstrate how clerics are not good actors in the secular space, and how I, in particular, am not qualified to speak let alone get attention in the subject area that you believe to be a respectable authority.
“How ironic that with all the experience you claim to have and strategic positioning in the corridors of power, you find it offensive that clerics like myself are demanding accountability yet you have not used your influence to transform or rid the system of its glaring rot.
“You find clerics’ involvement in your ‘sacred political space’ as ecumenical harlotry because you do not appreciate their source of motivation.
“It does not concern the church that President Mugabe or Mnangagwa, Tsvangirai or Chamisa rules the country. It, however, concerns any sober and true church leader when the poor, vulnerable and voiceless suffer at the hands of those leaders.
“Again, those with ‘credentials’ like yourself cannot see the suffering of the masses.
“Why would the plight of the suffering masses concern you? You probably have access to good medical facilities, educational facilities for your children, access to natural resources, dubious tenders, foreign currency at rates that others can’t access, and protection from prosecution when you commit overt corrupt activities among many other economic and social injustices. It does not affect you after all.
“The clerics live with the vulnerable masses, feel their pain and hear their cries day and night. It is therefore their heavenly mandate to be a voice for the voiceless and spine for the spineless as they speak out and challenge the ills that you are fighting hard to protect.
“I have a myriad of Scriptures to broaden your vista regarding the church’s mandate. However, for today I will refer you to two.
He said clerics were not motivated by political interests. The brave bishop insisted that clerics “will continue to hear more clerics speaking despite the threats.”
“You insinuate death threats on me by referencing to one protagonist in a play written by Christopher Marlowe, a protagonist who had developed a sense of invincibility, as he went about “on an unchecked conquering spree”, but eventually succumbed to death resulting from steadily small by small, ‘daily chipping down of his muscular tendons’.
“Whilst I take these threats seriously, I do not lose sleep over such, whether that death comes drastically or daily small by small. Whether my death will be a result of your insinuations or any other processes, let it be known to you Jamwanda, or whoever your real name is, that the voice of the church cannot be stifled.
“Your limited exposure to the bible and church history must have taught you that the church has always prevailed against all historical attempts by emperors or rulers to smother the voice of the church including killing prophets as you insinuate.
“Who am I, but a mere mortal, albeit clothed with the prophetic virtue to define the destiny of my county. I am very mortal but will at some point be transitioned to immortality? For me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. Therefore, weigh for yourself whether I should obey man or God?
“Your article is full of ironies. It is the system you are part of and on whose behalf you are angry that has exuded this false sense of bravado and invincibility as though they will be here forever. They were killed in Matabeleland from 1983 to1987. They have shed blood just to seize land. They destroyed homes and were killed in 2008.
“They were killed on August 1, 2018. Who has displayed a false sense of immortality here? You correctly stated that a fly cannot produce honey. Who do you honestly think that this refers to the most?
“Your imagery sir Jamwanda, is ironically more descriptive of the system you represent than me and other church leaders you are trying to paint black.
“The church has reconciled people in communities, and many have abandoned violence. We have produced honey because we are bees. These community members will resist the use of violence because they have learned to do so from the church. Who really is the fly trying to produce honey? God and history will judge.
“Mr Jamwanda sir, do not think you are any safer than all of us. Do not sacrifice your conscience. Be principle-driven. Know that Zimbabweans are a lot wiser than your anchorless article whose value does not go beyond English embellishments,” Bishop Magaya wrote.