Posted by: Titus Presler | May 4, 2010

Unrest, legal maneuvers & confrontations continue in Manicaland

Unrest, financial difficulty and outright confrontation continue in the Diocese of Manicaland, as attested by this communication received from Bp. Julius Makoni on 5 March 2010, addressed to the Rt. Rev. Christopher Chessun, Bishop of Woolwich in the Diocese of Southwark in the Church of England:

Dear Bishop Christopher,

Thank you very much for the Zimbabwe legal appeal document that Margret kindly forwarded to me. I hope that we receive a favourable response.

Meanwhile, the problems continue. I have just received news that two of our churchwardens have been arrested and and charged with disturbing St. Augustine’s Mission. They went to the school at the invitation of the Sisters [Community of the Holy Name], who wanted to show solidarity with the rest of CPCA [Church of the Province of Central Africa]. I haveinstructed Cecelia, my PA/Diocesan Treasurer, to borrow funds from the bank, to bail them out before they are brutalized in the remand prison in Mutare. Unfortunately, these incidents are on the increase and are a distraction and a massive drain to whatever meagre resources we have.

On the 24th of February, we went to court again. We won our case against Mr. Jakazi: our lawyers argued, successfully, that we have the right to sue Jakazi and his followers. The next stage is to ask the courts for an
eviction order so that we can have access to our churches, schools, hospitals and other properties. We borrowed $12 000 from the bank to pay legal fees for round one. The result shows this was the right thing to do. It is now crucial that we raise the funds to pay the lawyers to institute the final round. We need a further $20 000 for this exercise. The lawyers are convinced that we will win our case. We desperately need assistance in this regard.

The problems of motivating a dedicated team without paying them the necessary stipend on time continue to plague us. We have not paid stipends for February. I still have no accommodation in Mutare and have not received any assistance/stipend since I went to Mutare in November last year! We have now moved into our new offices near the Mutare Club, where I put up when I’m in Mutare, but we are still to pay the rent!

Despite our problems, we continue to worship and hope that we overcome the adversities soon. I confirmed 120 candidates last Sunday at St David’s Gunda, near Rusape, and will hold big services at Bonda and Nyamaropa this
coming weekend. This is what keeps me going! Please continue to pray for us. We appreciate all your help and
assistance from USPG and your Link group.

We hope you will visit us soon in Manicaland.

With best wishes and prayers from us all in Manicaland,

+ Julius.

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