Monday, September 12, 2011

Saving Witch children in Africa

At the core of the teachings of Jesus Christ is love, love from God for humankind (John 3:16) which we ought to reflect back in love for God and in loving our neighbours including those we consider our enemies. Any teaching that negates, undermines or deviates from this and results in stigmatization, psychological or physical abuse is therefore a heresy and originates from the father of lies who is also a murderer from the beginning as the fruit of his lies is evil and death, both at an individual as well as societal level. The true evidence of the presence of the Spirit of Christ is shown in genuine caring love (agape) which among other things results in joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, goodness and self-control. In our African continent we find many Pentecostal, Charismatic and independent churches who stigmatize children and other vulnerable groups in society as witches who are the cause of the misfortunes that befall their families and communities. Using Charismatic prophecy and other gifts of the Spirit as tools of divination, pastors, prophets and apostles claim sniff out the witches. Those who are sniffed out are exposed to abuse, ostracism, torture and murder. The more 'lucky' ones are exorcised of their demons in a heavy handed manner which often includes beatings, starvation and imprisonment until the families of the accused pay the high fees demanded by the prophet. Some prophets do not demand fees but build a name of fame by means of public witch sniffing and public exorcisms which in the end translates in higher financial contributions in form of tithes and offerings as well as monetary rewards offered by family members whose children have been 'treated'. However, the children once stigmatized as witches continue to be viewed with suspicion and suffer emotional neglect if not outright psychological and physical abuse. Children whose parents are still alive may be taken back to the prophet over an over again for exorcisms but children who are orphaned are often chased away after having been branded witches with many of them ending up as street children or become victims of trafficking or get trapped in prostitution. As Africa Outreach we believe that God has called us to join arms with others in countering this ungodly heresy and mitigate its impact on the African children. Please pray for us and support us in this effort. God bless, Dr. Erwin van der Meer

1 comment:

Abuja said...

Wonderful to see a Christian outreach organisation condemning the abuse of children under the guise of fase prophecy and teachings. The work of Stepping Stones Nigeria has done much to highlight such ungodly practice.

Thank you