AFM Congregants Heckle Pastor, Force Him To Leave Pulpit
The Apostolic Faith Mission (AFM) in Zimbabwe Domboramwari Assembly Sunday service degenerated into chaos yesterday after congregants blocked the introduction of a new resident pastor.
H-Metro reported that a provincial church leader, identified as Pastor Hungwe, was heckled by church members and told to leave the pulpit while introducing the new pastor.
Irate church members waved placards written, “We want Chazika”, “Leave politics to politicians, kana vafundisi venyu vasina mabasa, ngavatsvage mabasa”.
Pastor Hungwe preached briefly before announcing that he had been sent to introduce a new resident pastor.
He said the incumbent, Pastor Pride Chazika, had been reassigned to the Stoneridge Assembly. Said Pastor Hungwe:
We serve a God of seasons. Today I have come to announce a message from the provincial headquarters about a new pastor who will take you through this season.
Some people believed to have been hired to disturb the announcement then disrupted the announcement and confronted Pastor Hungwe and forced him to leave the pulpit.
They waved placards and chanted words of protest, demanding that Pastor Chazika be retained.
The Domboramwari Assembly chairperson called for order to give Pastor Hungwe a chance to respond to the congregants’ demands. He said:
Thank you for understanding. As children of God, since we are of the same faith and church, I have heard your message and I will take it as it is to the province.
I cannot say it is good or bad, but I will present it to the provincial leadership as it is that you do not want Pastor Chazika to be removed from this assembly.
The new pastor and his wife, who were awaiting to be presented to the church, walked away as congregants continued to protest.
A senior church member claimed that Pastor Chazika was being persecuted. Said the congregant:
It doesn’t mean that we are against you, but the church leadership failed to address the matter of Pastor Chazika.
Pastor Chazika has been reassigned to Stoneridge, not as a routine change, but as punishment for reprimanding one of the church board members’ wife for misbehaving at a meeting in Masvingo.
He was humiliated last Tuesday over this and forced to pack his belongings. He cried as he was not even allowed to say goodbye to his flock. That is unacceptable, musatambe nesu muchidaro.
Pastor Chazika has been with us for two years only and another pastor was also removed from here for preaching the true gospel and calling a spade a spade.
If we continue to allow leadership to treat people and junior pastors in this manner, we will also be held accountable for not defending their rights and instead siding with lies.
Pastor Hungwe told the Assembly that he will return with the provincial leadership’s decision next Sunday.