TORN APART with BOYD PHIRI
IT seems nowadays if you want to attract a large following to make bucks you add ‘prophet’ to your name.
Forget about prophet Bushili, this is why someone would prefer to call himself prophet Mavuto, even if his traditional name means problems.
Someone would want to call himself prophet Malilo even if his traditional name means funeral, yet someone would want to call himself prophet Masauso even if the traditional name means suffering.
Yes, to some people who bask in the title of men of God, being a prophet means everything, including putting their hands in their congregants’ pockets.
By the time they start distributing fliers headlined “STOP SUFFERING”, they would have made sure that they have stopped suffering themselves using your hard-earned money.
Perhaps this is the reason why you don’t see them distributing fliers headlined “STOP STEALING”.
Not that it is bad to stop suffering, but one thing is sure, some clergymen are obsessed with being in control over people and giving them orders to bring their valuable items, including underwear for anointing.
This is why most people flock to wherever they hear there is a prophet, leaving their own pastors in the hood wondering whether they should abandon preaching and start farming, although it is better for them to sow a seed than force congregants to plant in their pockets every time.
It would not be surprising to hear that most of our local pastors have become fishermen instead of fishers of men after losing their flock to foreign prophets. Of course, a prophet is never welcomed in his own town, not even in his own hood.
Maybe this is why nowadays school classroom churches in the hood are not attracting many people as most of them stay home waiting for a foreign prophet to come to town.
If they want marriage, they call upon the name of a prophet instead of the name of God; if they want their husbands to stop drinking beer, they call upon the name of a prophet instead of God; if they want their underwears to be as white as snow, they call upon a prophet to bring anointed underwear.
Needless to say, it is not right to drag the name of God into problems involving one’s underwear, even if one needs a new one.
In other words, for some people, prophets have become substitutes to witchdoctors who also profess to have solutions to every problem, including bringing back one’s lost lover.
Some people call upon the name of a prophet to heal them instead of the name of God, others call upon the name of a prophet when they need babies instead of the name of God.
This is why some prophets have been demanding a lot of money from some desperate women in the hood, even duping them into having sex with them under the pretext of anointing them with fertility.
Some women are duped into paying huge sums of money to some prophets under the pretext that their marital problems would be solved by prayer.
This brings me to the prophet Shepherd Bushiri saga. He has been accused by some of his followers in South Africa of ripping them off.
According to a report by ANN7, a woman who attended his session accused prophet Bushiri of making her pay 5,000 rand after she wrote to him to help her pray for her marriage.
The woman says nothing has changed in her marriage after paying the money to him.
Shepherd Bushiri has been in the news in recent weeks, of course, for wrong reasons.
In Zambia, he has become at odds with Government and some local clergymen whom he has accused of frustrating his trip to the country to conduct healing sessions.
Even if he had insisted that he would travel to Zambia in spite of his travel ban as a foreign prophet, the government says he is not welcome.
Of course, it would be naïve for him to insist on coming to the hood when he has thrown the name of Minister of Religious Affairs Godfridah Sumaili into the mad.
I support Government’s position to ensure that controversial prophets like Bushiri do not make people in the hood start adding ‘prophet’ to their names and sell prayers to the highest bidder to buy planes.
Of course, not all prophets are bad, but it is some clergymen like Bushiri who have distorted people’s view about prophets.