IT IS not surprising that President Edgar Lungu and the PF are trying to hide their sins by calling for a day of prayers because even thieves, armed robbers and murderers first pray when they go to steal, says Father Richard Luonde. In an interview yesterday, Fr Luonde, an Anglican priest, said God will punish President Lungu and his team if the declaration of October 18 as a day of prayer, fasting and reconciliation was not done in good faith. “It is not surprising that they (PF) are calling for prayers because even thieves, armed robbers and murderers do their own prayers before they steal but you begin to wonder the God they pray to. When you declare a day of prayers, you must indicate your intentions. Why are you calling for those prayers? It’s very sad that people are now beginning to hide their atrocities behind God.
They want to be seen as if they are godly people when in the actual fact, they are not. They are not because if you are a sincere man of God, it will not be up to you to declare that you are religious, people will declare you to be religious,” he said. “I concur with what Mr Wynter Kabimba said the other day and you know we are fortunate in Zambia to have upright men like him. That is why I have followed him so that Zambia begins to have honest leaders. To simply wake up and go to the National Assembly and say, we are going to have a day of national prayers; I think these people who are advising the President on religious matters must be serious.”
Fr Luonde said prayer was a serious calling because it meant communicating with God and that people needed to be serious when calling for prayers. “So, when you make false declarations, God, in turn, will punish you because you are not being sincere, you are just being fake. The devil is also a god on his own. The devil can blind people and think they are doing the right thing when in the actual fact, they are wrong. We should be careful,” he said. Fr Luonde said he was shocked that President Lungu was also trying to personalise State House by building a chapel there.
“I read in the paper that President Lungu has intentions of building a chapel at State House. State House must not be personalised. State House must remain as State House. Dr [Kenneth] Kaunda was a Christian but never built a chapel at State House; Fredrick Chiluba was a staunch Christian but he never had intention of building a chapel at State House. When you build a Christian chapel at State House, you are personalising matters, that is State House. What if a Muslim brother or sister becomes president?” Fr Luonde asked. He said inasmuch as Zambia was a Christian nation, it was also a free state and that anyone could aspire for presidency regardless of their religious background. “Are they also going to build a Mosque there, or a Hindu hall there? There are a lot of churches where one could go and worship.
We don’t want the President to build a chapel at State House and the next thing, denominations will start differing over who is in charge of it,” said Fr Luonde.
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