Should the church clear itself over escrow money scandal?
January 4, 2015 § Leave a comment
It is really heart breaking to see a fellow Tanzania playing an advocacy role for the individuals behind the escrow account scandal, it is chilling! The church leaders who received the escrow money did not only wrong God but showed a bad example to the people they purport to lead them to heaven.
These are blind leaders trying to lead the blind followers and for such Jesus said they will all (the leaders and those whom are led) fall in the ditch. By the ditch Jesus meant hell. There is no recompense for the bishops who are involved in the escrow scandal but to repent and return the money.
Zacchaeus (in Luke 19) one of the richest man in Jesus’ time had accumulated his wealth fraudulently. After his encounter with Jesus he did not only repent but also repaid those whom he has fraudulently taken money from. He did not only pay what he took but did it 5 times more. Repentance only in matters such as this is not enough, it has to go along with some reformation. In this sense returning the money with some interest!
According to The Citizens, a daily English paper in Tanzania, published on 3rd Jan 2015 (http://www.thecitizen.co.tz/News/Nzigilwa–Yes–I-accepted-escrow-cash-and-this-is-why/-/1840392/2575890/-/sm7f0p/-/index.html), Bishop Nzigilwa claimed he had no any wrong doing in receiving the cash from the minority Shareholder of IPTL as the money was given for the church. The question we are asking is the same we asked Prof Anna Tibaijuka, why was the money paid to the Bishop’s personal account? We know Roman Catholic Church is one of the most firmly established religious institution in the world with proper governance structures in place. Donations by church members or any other institution given for the advancement of church businesses would go through the proper church accounting system. We would expect therefore the secretary or treasurer of the church, Parish or Diocese where the bishop is shepherding to give a statement and not the bishop himself.
The public has taken note of the scandal which to a large extent has marred the church, an institution which has always played a significant role in rebuking corruption in our society and promoting good governance. It is high time now the church hierarchy give a statement over the matter or take the Biblical disciplinary measures against the erring leaders. In my little knowledge of scriptures the measures would include asking them to quickly return the money. The church standards are placed higher than the secular institutions and to whom much is given much will be required.