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Best man got the job

I WISH to make a few comments in response to an article “Rift hits Catholics” (Herald July 12) over the recent appointment of Hwange bishop RC Ndlovu as the new archbishop of Harare.

lvetica, sans-serif”>It is shocking to note that there are some power-thirsty vampires within the Catholic Church bent on spreading the gospel of regionalism, tribalism, division and ethnic hatred. This unholy gang of power-hungry people who call themselves Concerned Catholic Church members argue that other dioceses in Mashonaland, Manicaland, Masvingo and Gweru had candidates who were more qualified to replace the late archbishop.

Can these so-called Concerned Church members explain what criteria they used to aver that the four names they gave were more qualified than the appointed candidate?

They must remember that choosing a Catholic bishop does not mean selecting one who has a chain of degrees. The choice is mainly determined by the bishop/priest’s moral rectitude and probity before the church and being a man of prayer imbued with the love of God and his neighbour. After all these have been considered, only then can we think of his education.

This does not imply that education is not important. I am only emphasising the sanctity required by the office.

We believe the selection of Bishop RC Ndlovu was done after a thorough vetting of the bishop’s past life by his brother bishops. It was not based on who had ingratiated himself to the public for the wrong reasons. You are also reminded that some people are like wolves dressed in sheep’s skins. They appear pious in public and when put under a microscope, the world would be shocked by their true colours.

I reiterate that Bishop Ndlovu’s appointment was done with the approval of the Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops’ Conference. There is, therefore, no reason for some people to claim that some other people from Mars should have been selected. What we want is a shepherd of the flock and not a political appointee as what the Concerned Catholic members wished.

The learned author of the article says Shona and Ndebele cultures differ in their burial rites. May I ask – does one become a bishop to bury the dead?

How did the white bishops (Archbishop Chichester, Archbishop Markal, Bishop Reckter and Bishop Floro) who came from very different cultural backgrounds from ours cope with the burial of the dead in their dioceses?

Writing to the Pope is not advisable because this will expose them as power-hungry people who have their own preferred candidates. It will also appear that there are clerics behind this. For the clergy, it is however more reasonable since they aspired to the same post but lost.

My advice to the author of the article is: If you are a true Catholic, you should not allow yourself to be used by some power-hungry clerics.

The most important action is to rally behind the newly-appointed archbishop, give him all the support you can, pray that he succeeds in his new archdiocese to lead people to God and ask God to bless his work.

What we want now is an archbishop, a true pastor of his flock – whether black, blue, yellow or white. We want priests and archbishops who honestly and devoutly dedicate their entire lives to the service of God and their neighbours. We do not like priests who run businesses and forget to serve their flock.

T Muchanyara,


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