Bishop's speech at the opening of the 6th session of the Congo's annual conference is25 juillet 2018
Address by MGR UNDA Yap Gabriel, l'eveque of the ECC/81st C.M.U.C.E., at the annual conference 2017-2018 a KINDU Excellency Governor of the Province of Maniema Reverend District Superintendents, Reverends, members of the Conference Annual, ladies and gentlemen the Déléguéslaics, distinguished guests, to your titles and qualifications any protocol that is respected, on behalf of our Episcopal region of the Congo, is, at first glance, important to us to fulfil a threefold and pleasant moral duty. Above all, we wish you collectively the warm welcome here ÀKindu where the foundation of this annual conference 2017-2018 will be held. It is time to sympathize with the pastors and lay delegates from other parts of the city of Kindu for having made a long journey on the road, canoe, foot or other means; It is the same and especially of our brother coming from the USA to participate with us in these assizes. We then naturally express our heartfelt thanks to God, our heavenly Father, who offers us every year the opportunity to gather together to evaluate the accomplishment of the tasks he has entrusted to us in his field. At the same time, we very much thank His Excellency the President of the Republic and head of State, the Central government and His Excellency the Governor of the Province of Maniema for the peace and security that reign in our country, peace Without which we can not gather here. In the same way, we are amazed by the warm welcome which is thus reserved to us by the superintendents, pastors and all the faithful: This translates an expression of love and sacrifice. We thank all the leaders of the state and the faithful of our church on whom we implore the grace of God. Allow us here and now to take advantage of this opportunity that is offered to us to publicly present our dear wife, Dr. Marie-Claire DIANDJA UNDA, through whom we are remarried after ten years of widowhood. Reverend Superintendents of Districts, dear delegates, as far as we can judge, 2017-2018 is a year in which we together benefited from the love and protection of God. This tender climate has certainly fostered satisfactory work despite the death of a few men, women, young people and enfantsd'entre us who have oeuvrépour the glory of God. Peace in memory of Professor Michel LODI SHUWEMBO LOMENA, first rector of Our Methodist University in Kindu. We invite you to stand up to keep a minute of silence in their memory. We therefore believe it is useful to collect their photos and works in order to form their memoirs. Compared to the university's leaders after the shocking and unannounced death of the rector, we inform you that the Reverend doctoral candidate ATUMISHI is currently pursuing his doctoral studies normally which will be able to complete by the end of November 2018, if God Wants. Excellency Governor, Révérendissimes, ladies and gentlemen, it is our duty to justify here and now the major reason for the relocation of the place where the foundation of this annual conference should be held 2018. Indeed, as some know, it is the still thorny problem of mass transport especially since our church does not yet have a large truck or airplane for the mass displacement of delegates of the annual conference. However, the distance to reach Tunda is by far very large compared to Kindu, which is practically in the middle of the province; To 250 km to the north and the same distance to the south. This annual conference is singularly devoted to a number of elections including:
- The vote of the alternate members for the Extraordinary General Conference in February 2019quin will be held in St. Louis, Mississippi State in the USA in February 2019;
- The voting of the effective and suplénants members of the ordinary General Conference of April-May 2020 in Minnesota, state of Minneapolis, USA;
- The vote on a constitutional amendament of our Book of Discipline.
So we must pray a lot for the judicious election of our delegates to these various planetary-level foundations. This task is undoubtedly the responsibility of the nominating Committee for the renewal of the delegates ' mandates or the vote of new delegates. At the same time, we seize this auspicious opportunity to evoke the ongoing construction of the Kindu Methodist Women's centre known as the Maman Lynn Centre, an appropriate framework for the execution of many diverse activities within the church. That is why we call for the eagerness of the company that builds it for the rapid end of the work of this Centre since the donors will soon see the pace. That the generous Congolese and foreign donors find here the expression of our sincere gratitude for their very important part in the advancement of the work of God in our region through their financial and material support necessary for the Finalization of the work of this eminently social work. As for the life of the nation, three major facts concern us:
- Firstly, the general elections which we fervently wish to hold shortly namely on Sunday, 23 December 2018 as foreseen by the CENI, it is the responsibility of the National Independent Electoral Commission (CENI) to ensure effective awareness of Populations at every nook and cranny of the country on the printer machine to vote. Therefore, politicians from all over the border should be involved in these elections for the choice of the leaders of the next mandate. The church intends to accredit Methodist observers as witnesses from abroad.
- Secondly, as some people know, community social progress, in other words the full development of the country is partly contingent on the good condition of the roads. Because these and the abolition of barriers undoubtedly favour the opening up of cities and urban centres through the evacuation of food to its agglomerations for the suppression of hunger.
- Thirdly, respect for the human lives which, in the east of the country, are continually victims of the murders perpetrated by uncontrolled armed groups. For all these deaths are our faithful Christians.
On the other hand, we have learned, as everyone in the radio Okapi Wave Voice, the creation of a political party that would bring together all the Christians of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, including the Protestants. In response to this unusual news, in our capacity as moderator of the ordinary and extraordinary National Synod, we inform you that the Protestants are not part of this so-called political structure. Our party is indeed the Church of Christ in the Congo. Thus, such a broadcast statement is for us biased since even the ordinary or extraordinary National Executive Committee that is yet empowered to decide for the church has not been consulted and knows nothing about it. Therefore, Protestants are neither closely or far involved in the existence of this political party while acknowledging the freedom of opinion of others. As a result, it is highly useful that we can refer to the burning issue that will be the subject of debate at the Extraordinary General Conference in February 2019. It is, alas, human sexuality. To this end, Reverends and Révéends, ladies and gentlemen, we should all understand that the church respects the genus, since it was created by God who, at the outset, distinguishes two beings: man and woman. But what is wrong is homosexuality, which is naturally a phenomenon incompatible with biblical teaching, which is strange in our African culture. That is why, the only convenient attitude towards our brothers and sisters who are from a culture different from ours is to make them see that their option is not at all consistent with biblical teaching. On the other hand, we are totally concerned about the sacred unity of our church on a universal scale. We take this same opportunity to remind the whole community of the collective decision we have taken to rebuild our church in order to avoid the distraction and lethargy that would cause us to delay. This is the mobilisation to the collection of a dollar per faithful and monthly based on the creed or vision from the Book of Nehemiah 2:8, and which has now become a motto for our episcopal region of the East Congo and the Central African Republic. Let each one of us become aware of this vision that guarantees the best tomorrow of our church. We must be aware that any partnership has limits to the extent that it never constitutes any permanent financial and material support. Let us have the common firm will to get used to taking care of us for the full development of our church. In fact, no one has ever served God without being rewarded. Finally, we must be aware that our annual conference will receive many foreign delegations which will take part in a number of important meetings in the country, and for the following courtesy visits:
- Seminar on Religion and Racedu 14-17août 2018 at Kindu under the chairmanship of the Secretary General of the general Commission of the religion and Race; All the Methodist bishops of the Congo also and their delegations will be expected.
- of 17-23 August 2018 the meeting of the National Aviation Council will be held in Kinshasa, where the process of purchasing an aircraft for our Episcopal region and the Executive Committee of the Central Conference of the Congo will continue.
- Visit of the missionary from September 24-26 to 2018 in the Congo is in Goma and Bukavu in the context of Religion and Race.
- Reverend Superintendents of Districts, visit of the bishops in the Central African Republic of 11-19 November 2018.
Dear delegates, In conclusion, we urge you to save time during this conference as recommended in the Discipline of the church. For, we assume that the essentials had already been the subject of the proposals by the district conferences so that here we could simply stick to the approval of good resolutions. We wish all good work atmosphere and excellent stay in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. On that basis, we declare open the sixth regular session of the Congo-East annual conference in Kindu-Nord. Thank you so much for your kind attention.