President Peter Mutharika said on Saturday government and the church should strive to promote unity of common purpose and mutual respect in eliminating prevailing moral decadence in the country.
He made the remarks at Zomba Gymkhana Club ground during the 40th anniversary of Zomba Theological College (ZTC) celebrated under the theme: ‘Christ Is All in All’.
The President said the church should provide spiritual support to change people’s mindset for the country to achieve meaningful progress in development.
“It is imperative that religious leaders should champion unity of purpose both in and outside the church. We need to share a common purpose because we are all equal before the eyes of the Almighty,” Mutharika said.
He assured the nation that government would not condone any form of violence because it is the source of instability.
The President, therefore, asked religious, political and traditional leaders to take a leading role in fighting social issues, including the abduction and killing of albinos.
Chairperson of the ZTC Board of Trustees, Rev. Masauko Mbolembole, said the institution has been influential in training pastors in Malawi and from other countries such as Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Rev. Mbolembole, who is also moderator of Blantyre Synod of Church of Central Africa Presbyterian (CCAP), called on well-wishers to support the college to fulfil its mission of contributing to spiritual growth of people in the country.
On his part, CCAP General Assembly moderator Reverend Timothy Nyasulu said Malawi is failing to develop due to divisions existing among political, religious and ethnic groups in the country.
Preaching from Psalms 133:1-3, read by President Mutharika, Nyasulu said the country is infested with pride, selfishness, jealousy and hatred, which are hindering God’s blessings.
“There are some political and ethnic groups in the country that feel that they are the owners of this land [Malawi] and they disregard other people’s views. This is the kind of spirit that is sabotaging the development of the country,” he said.
Giving an example of King David, Nyasulu said when David realised that there were divisions among the Israelites, he reconciled them for the development of Israel.
“Therefore, it will be imperative for the State President to propagate peace in the country by bringing together all conflicting parties to unity, to enable the country move forward, successfully,” he said.
During the ceremony, ZTC recognised individuals who have contributed to the development of the college. Former president Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda was awarded for constructing two houses and a monastery at the campus. The award was received by Mama Cecilia Kadzamira.
Others recognised included Rev Silas Ncozana, Senior Chief Kachindamoto and Traditional Authority Malemia.
ZTC was established in 1977 by the CCAP General Assembly comprising five synods, namely Blantyre, Nkhoma, Livingstonia, Lusaka and Harare.
Events marking ZTC’s 40th anniversary celebrations started with prayers on Thursday at Zomba CCAP Church and cheering the sick at Zomba Central Hospital.—Additional reporting by Holyce Kholowa, Correspondent