“Evicted and Forgotten: The Plight of a Blind Pastor Left Homeless After 19 Years of Service”
1 July 2024
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My take on the story of the blind Pastor who was evicted from his church-owned house recently

I read with sadness the story of this blind pastor who was recently evicted from his church-owned house in Harare. According to the Pastor, he has served the church for nineteen years, opened a number of church branches, only to be evicted and left homeless in these chilly weather conditions.

Yes, most of us would find it easy to blame the clergyman for his failure to plan his life on time. At sixty, he must have constructed a house of his own and not depended upon the church for accommodation five years before his retirement, we can say, but we don’t know his circumstances.

Who are we to judge? The Church must have been more sympathetic to the struggling man of the cloth and allowed him to continue using the church-owned house for his accommodation.

I remember back in 2002/2003 in Mbizo Suburb, Kwekwe. I was a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church Mbizo 12. Mbizo 12 SDA Church was (and is) a beautiful Church. The building was very beautiful, and the furniture was very nice as well. There was a vibrant youth ministry, the Adventist Youth (AY), of which I was a member at that time.

I was also a member of the Church Board, the highest decision-making committee at a local church chaired by the Pastor or the Head Elder in the absence of the Pastor.

I remember very well there was a recurring debate over the church janitor. There was a man who used to stay at the Church cottage—the house is still there even today. There was a very vocal woman within the church board advocating for the eviction of this man from the church house.

I don’t know the circumstances leading this man to be allowed to stay at the Church house, but tempers were high, and a lot of accusations were leveled against him, and so it was demanded that he must be evicted from the church house.

I remember vividly Pastor Pambana, who was our Pastor at the time, choosing to be neutral on the matter and tactfully avoiding putting the motion to a vote, and therefore no resolution was made on the topic.

Pastor Pambana was transferred and replaced by Pastor Mukandabvute. I was still a member of the Church Board. The same woman—she was a teacher at a local school—reignited the subject. She wanted this man to be evicted. She was given the opportunity to explain at one of the church Board meetings, and she had two or three supporters on the board, but Pastor Mukandabvute refused to allow the Board to pass a resolution on the matter. I believe the man is still staying put at the Church house until today.

Why must we hate each other? Why must we celebrate the suffering of our church mates? You profess to be Christians, yet you want to see a sixty-year-old man staying on the streets with his family while you sleep comfortably in your houses. The next Sabbath or Sunday, you want to preach a moving sermon about the love of Jesus. Oh shame!

God hates hypocrites! We must practice what we preach and aspire to have Christ-like characters—compassionate, merciful, considerate, loving, generous, sympathetic, and empathetic. We must know that we are “our brother’s keepers.”

I thank you.

Etiwel Mutero is a Zimbabwean archivist, records manager, teacher, political analyst, and author with extensive experience in records and archives management. His work focuses on the proper care of records and archives, and he has organized several workshops on records and library management. He has also written a book titled “College & University Essays in Records & Library Management” and has published several articles in online newspapers.

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