Catholic Members of Parliament who have just been elected in the May tripartite elections in the country have been called to practice servant leadership following the example of our Lord Jesus Christ and guided by the Social Teaching of the church.
The call was made by Archbishop Tarcizio Ziyaye during an interface meeting with the Members of Parliament (MPs) through the Catholic Parliamentary Liaison Office. The archbishop said to transform leaders and politicians in the country, the Bishops set aside the office to provide pastoral care to the MPs and instill in them a properly formed conscious that will safeguard their Christianity as Catholic ambassadors in parliament.
“The Church has realized the need for formationof Catholic Members of Parliament in Christian Doctrine. We feel the Church has so far not engaged sufficiently our Parliamentarians in proper training programs on important issues that would be necessary for one to be well versed when making important decisions that affect policies in our country. We encourage you to always remember that as Catholic members of Parliament, you are first and foremost Christians and then politicians. Therefore, seek God’s wisdom and keep Christian values so that you discharge your duties with faith and love”. Said Archbishop Ziyaye.
He continued that the church is proud having its Christians in the Parliament, and no matter what challenges they face, they should keep the social teaching of the church throughout their calling. The Archbishop Further said the MPs are elected to serve the people who are facing numerous problems in the country, hence the need to put the common good of all Malawians at heart through servant leadership.
The Catholic Parliamentary Officer, Rev Fr. Henry Chinkanda said as the theme for the meeting “Elected for a Purpose” suggested, the MPs are elected to be servants of the people. He said Malawi needs transformative and transformed Politicians if the country is to develop to its full potential. Through formative trainings, Chaplaincy and pastoral services and provision of an interface between the church and the legislature to dialogue on pro-poor policies, the church believes to instill Christians identity in the Catholic Parliamentarians so that they should influence good policy formulation in Parliament.
He also advised the Mps to resist the temptation of selfishness, that causes them to accumulate a lot of wealth for themselves while those the represent are living in dire poverty.
Speaking for the MPs, Honourable Deus Gumba, law maker for Mchinji South West in the country thanked the Catholic Church for always encouraging its Christians to take part in politics in all dioceses in the country. He said the Parliamentary Liaison Office has always encouraged unity amongst them despite their belonging to different parties, a value that binds Catholic MPs in Parliament.
The MPs have promised total support to the Parliamentary Liaison office and asked for its regular services to the Catholic MPs.