By Odiwuor Opiyo
CHINHOYI, MARCH 4, 2022 (CISA) – Bishop Raymond Mupandasekwa of the Catholic Diocese of Chinhoyi has reiterated Pope Francis’s call for prayer and fasting for peace in his Lenten Message to the faithful of his diocese and the world.
In a statement, the cleric alludes to the ongoing political instability in Zimbabwe and Russia saying, “…we come to the season of Lent in a time of war between Russia and Ukraine. …We in Zimbabwe, also come to this season of Lent concerned about growing political violence that has already led to the loss of human lives.”
Bishop Mupandasekwa advanced the Pope’s message drawn from Galatians 6:9-10, “where St. Paul urges us to never grow tired of doing good to all and to never give up for, we are to reap a good harvest.”
“In calling us to never give up and to never grow tired of doing good to all pope Francis is evoking in each one of us the virtue of fortitude, courage under pressure and the virtue of perseverance,” said the prelate.
“The Holy Father is calling us, with the courage of fortitude to look at the many men and women lying on the side of our own roads, wounded, hungry, homeless and to attend to their needs,” he added.
The bishop also encouraged the faithful to, “go into battle with evil through prayer, and through prayer overpower it.”
“We face the evil of greed and selfishness that drive us to look at our own needs and not those of others. Let us always remember that good we do this lent is the achievement of the God we encounter in our prayer.”
The first African Bishop of Chinhoyi Diocese stressed, “The first act of Lenten charity is to give quality time to our families and our communities listening to each other.”
About the Pope’s message, the bishop averred, “One of the many sins me that often go unconfessed according to the Holy Father is ‘an addiction to the digital media, which impoverishes human relationships. Many of us now prefer conversation with strangers we meet online away than those we live with, our children, our spouses and our fellow community members. There is growing loneliness in our homes.”
“Listening to another is a way of receiving one another as we are. Let our conversations and our prayer together help us overcome loneliness and empower us to face the future with confidence. Let us respond to the Pope’s call to do good to all by almsgiving this Lent,” concluded Bishop Mupandasekwa.