By SANDRA MACHIMA
ZAMBIA remains a haven of peace and a good example of a Christian nation that also allows other religions to function, says Expanded Church Response executive director Troy Lewis.
Reverend Troy said his organisation was looking at means of tapping into the potential and skills that lie within churches and see how they can help in advancing the developmental agenda of Zambia.
The clergyman pledged support to government in its developmental agenda through its commitment to awakening the church to its calling and empowering its members to transform the world around them.
Rev. Troy said it was important for the Zambian government to engage into partnerships that bring about peace and promote coexistence of people in the nation.
He explained that his institution had ventured into investing and exploring the potential that lay in the community and churches through capacity building for individual churches.
He said this could be done by identifying skills while and the same time training churches to develop strategic community projects to meet physical, emotional and spiritual needs.
The clergyman paid a courtesy call on Minister of National Guidance and Religious Affairs, Godfridah Sumaili to reaffirm its commitment to working with the Zambian community for the transformation of people through their programmes such as capacity building.
He appealed to the government to keep in check on all religions in the country to ensure that Christian values were not lost.
And Rev Sumaili acknowledged Zambia was a Christian nation founded on Christian values and principles and the motto of one Zambia One Nation. This situation, Rev Sumaili said, called for strong partnerships, peace and coexistence. She thanked the Expanded Church Response for the role they were playing in uniting people through the various programmes it was implementing in the country.
Rev. Sumaili said Zambia was one of the few countries in the world that had enjoyed peace since independence hence the need for peace to be preserved and natured above all.
“It is government’s aspiration to empower the church for the benefit of the community and ensuring that all church institutions have well established structures of leadership.
“And it is government’s desire to see to it that partners such as the Expanded Church Response help government strengthen the church in remaining compliant, truthful and with integrity to effectively contribute to the economy of the nation and improve the living standards of people,” Ms Sumaili said.