Pentecostal churches hold the power to bring about prosperity and revolutionize the political and social sphere not just in the country, but on the (African) continent.
Churches with welfare programs and outreach ministries nearly single-handedly improved the quality of life in Zimbabwe, African journalist Saul Gwakuba Ndlovu writes in a recent analysis.
But it’s not just any church; charismatic and Pentecostal churches who practice the gifts of the Holy Spirit are seeing miracles manifest in their congregations.
“It is undeniable that the new religious phenomenon represented by the charismatic Pentecostal and apostolic sects attracts a much larger number of those aged roughly between 15 and 50 years, give or take five years either way,” Ndlovu writes.
“Unlike the well-established conventional denominations, the charismatic churches highlight the message of economic prosperity and physical health through miracles and prayer. Their message appeals more to those to whom the current Zimbabwe economic situation has neither a promise nor hope. The message gives them a hope to achieve their economic dreams and hope for higher social status. Added to the miracles, the obviously well-to-do status of some of the pastors consciously motivates young people to become their followers, giving them hope that they will sooner than later emulate them (the well-to-do pastors),” he continues.
The churches’ focus on fundraising accumulates wealth and appears to break the cycle of poverty among many attenders.
However, the focus on money hinders some churches, Ndlovu says. Many wealthy pastors fail to spread their messages to more rural areas, potentially widening Zimbabwe’s societal class division.
Meanwhile, Roman-Catholic churches, with funding from umbrella organizations, plod through rugged terrain to meet the needs of the least of these.
Though Christianity is one of the top religions in Zimbabwe, many argue the country is far from Christian.
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SOURCE: Charisma News