By Maxwell Awumah, GNA
Ho, Sept. 15, GNA - Right Reverend Dr Hilliard Dela Dogbe, Presiding Bishop, A.M.E. Zion Church has called on the Church to rise up and speak out truth to power and against all forms of injustices.
He said the Church was losing its "prophetic edge" with the blades of biblical righteousness having become too unsharpened to cut like a “two edge sword” and urged the Church to rekindle real biblical justice.
Rev. Dr Dogbe, in-charge of the Western West Africa Episcopal District of the A.M.E Zion Church said this at the Southern Sector Justice Conference under the tutelage of the GlobeServe Ministries International and Westwood Community Church in collaboration with International Justice Mission (IJM) in Ho.
It was on the theme: “The Role of The Church in Social Justice.”
He called on the Church to have the heart of justice, a community of faith that fostered the dignity of all and enhanced peace, justice and the wellbeing of all.
Rev. Dr Dogbe noted that injustice continued to be perpetuated at the core of human survival with many people becoming victims of abuse, poverty, exploitation, hunger, fear, child labour, prostitution and human trafficking.
The Presiding Bishop said injustice was rife in the Church as it was in society with some pastors perpetrating abuses through deceits, dehumanising acts, manifestation of deliverance through abusive means such as carrying of bags of cements, physical assaults of pregnant women, sex scandals and the degradation of the environment and entreated religious, traditional and political leadership to stem the tide.
Referencing Bob Nestor Marley, he said, “everybody is crying loud for peace but no one is crying for justice. Equal rights and justice irrespective of gender, status, religion or geo-location must be upheld.”
Rev. Dave Trautmann, Pastor of Westwood Community Church, USA, said not speaking to justice was injustice in disguise alluding that God and the Bible could represent how a master-craftsman produces beautiful kente fabric into finished product, with human beings representing the single threads that produced the fabric.
He said justice could be made possible through joy with righteousness and justice rekindling the character of God and reminded the participants that God hated to see injustice in all its forms.
Mr Nelson Akorli, Ho Municipal Chief Executive observed that the Church was lowering the spiritual moral high ground to mediocrity, self-centredness and inordinate penchant for materialism, which manifested with impunity.
He said the sanctity of the Church had been relegated to championing wrongdoing especially noise pollution, constructing Churches without building plans and regulations as well as mostly failing to provide places of convenience for their congregations.
“Do what is justifiable before God and man,” he added.
Rev Samuel Anthony Dunya, General Overseer of GlobeServe Ministries International said, “The gospel without justice is not gospel at all and without justice the Cross is meaningless. Collectively, we can win the war of social injustice.”
He called for partnership among Churches to genuinely take up their responsibilities as a prophetic voice for the voiceless and stem injustice.
Captain George Nfodjo, Rtd, former Member of Parliament, who chaired the event said a combination of biblical and physical justice must shape the Church and the society for the practical demonstration of the attributes of God to safeguard the environment and the afflicted.