As a Catholic Priest I was shocked to watch the video of a religious Sister being beaten. A religious Sister by virtue of her calling in her humanity is consecrated to God. Using physical force on such a person amounts to sacrilege. By definition “sacrilege is the violation or injurious treatment of a sacred object or person/an act of treating a place, person or object in a way that does not show proper respect.” Just like any other Church, the Catholic Church holds its religious leaders in high esteem, they are sacred. I wish to register my disappointment that such an abomination is happening in our country Zambia.
The entire event has shocked many Catholics and we pray that this be last for all of us to witness such an abomination. Most Catholics would know that Church law forbids use of physical force against the Roman Pontiff, Bishop, Cleric or religious persons Canon 1370 paragraph 1,2 and 3. In fact if a catholic would do so he or she would incur a just penalty. I am sure that in every establishment there is a grievance procedure which was suppose to have been used if the person was not happy with the administrator’s decision. If in Zambia this is the way we are going to deal with our religious leaders (pastors, priests, evangelists, Apostles, bishops, etc) then we are calling upon ourselves misfortunes.
We will be the most unfortunate nation in the entire face of the earth. I pray that sister will find it within her heart to forgive the poor man. That he and family slept outside their home is unfortunate. This forgiveness does not mean interfering with established laws of the land that deal with such issues even when it is religious man or woman that has committed a crime. Let us all continue to pray for each other, we are a people on a pilgrim on earth, journeying back to our creator. Let there be love, peace and reconciliation. Religious leaders are men and women called to do the work of God in their humanity, sometimes they could make mistakes, no one is perfect excerpt God. We pray for all our religious leaders to remain strong in the service of the Holy Gospel and as we bear witness to the end times.
With Love and Prayers,
Rev. Ignatius Lubasi Muyunda Chanakila
(from Western Province)