I THINK recent developments at the Anglican Cathedral and Greendale parish clearly show the difference between Bishop Nolbert Kunonga and Bishop Sebastian Bakare: one is a thug and the other a true spiritual leader.
The public ne
eds to know that the hype about homosexuality is real hypocrisy and opportunism on the part of Kunonga. Before he clutched onto this he had suggested as an agenda item to the provincial secretary that the Province of Central Africa should be dissolved as a sign of respect to Archbishop Bernard Malango who was retiring at the end of September 2007.
All other provincial bishops laughed at his reasoning. It was after this that he came up with homosexuality as the basis of breaking away.
This guy has said so many things which have fallen flat on his face. Just after the Episcopal Synod in Mungoshi last year, Kunonga was boasting in public that he was breaking away together with the dioceses of Manicaland and Central Zimbabwe.
The Diocese of Central Zimbabwe publicly expressed its irritation with these comments by Kunonga. As for Manicaland, Bishop Jakazi has seen the light and dissociated himself from Kunonga. He also apologised to the province for his ill-considered actions and being misled by Kunonga.
At the height of this, Kunonga also boasted that he had received so many invitations to join other dioceses in Africa, notably Nigeria, Kenya and Uganda. He even visited Uganda at the last Commonwealth meeting and made similar claims.The truth is that all these countries rejected him as they cannot take on a person who has broken away from the Anglican Communion.
With egg on his face Kunonga then created his own province at a “press conference”! This is unheard of and he should not compare this with the way the Province of Central Africa was created from the Province of Southern Africa. He knows very well that this was not done at a hastily called press conference with the Herald and the Sunday Mail.
The simple issue is that Kunonga broke away and people can see through his recent behaviour in Greendale and at the Cathedral and his tendency to financial imprudence of bouncing cheques and spending what he does not have that he was a welcome departure from the province.
His problem is like that of a person who has resigned from a company and wants to go away with company assets and use the company name. He has now been rejected by 98% of the parishes in the diocese. For some unknown reason, the Herald is ignoring this.
What Zanu PF should be careful of is that all the parishes in the rural areas, the heartland of the ruling party, have rejected Kunonga purely as a church issue. Zanu PF is in danger of losing votes if it continues, through the Herald and the Sunday Mail, to be seen as supporting a person who was rejected by people in Bindura, Marondera, Murehwa, Banket and so on.
Kunonga is alleging that the seat in the Cathedral is his. This is not an issue for the courts to consider who sits where in church. This is an issue which was resolved by the church through accepting his schismatic breakaway.
* The writer is a senior member of the Anglican Church.