Namibia needs new mindset - Bishop Katenda

30 October 2019 | Local News

ILENI NANDJATO

The new bishop of the Reformed Evangelical Anglican Church of Namibia (REACH-Namibia), Lukas Kaluwapa Katenda, is on a mission to renew minds following his consecration at Ondangwa this month.

Katenda said mindset reforms need to start with individuals, households, schools, churches and governments to enable people to move forward.

Katenda, a former priest of the Anglican Diocese of Namibia, says there is a need for a new mindset in Namibia and other African countries to achieve the necessary change in societies.

He said many projects of any kind have reached a dead end because those in charge lacked vision to overcome challenges.

“All the problems of high divorce rates, churches collapsing, corruption, overstaying in power and high rates of gender-based violence (GBV), they are all endemic in our societies because we are in mindless nations,” said Katenda.

“There is a need to renew people’s minds in order for us to move forward. Many people have been doing well in their marriage for a very long time, even up to 20 years, but end up divorcing because of a very small misunderstanding.

“These personal problems will them affect nations at large because these are same people serving in different portfolios at different levels in our governments or organisations.”

Katenda took over from Bishop Peter Kalangula, who died in 2008 and was the founding bishop of the Church of England in Namibia, now known as REACH-Namibia.

He said as a bishop, his mission is now to make sure that the church has competent leaders to attend to people’s spiritual needs.

Katenda holds a nursing qualification besides his master’s degree in theology from a theological seminary in the United States.

“We must do away with the culture of churches depending on congregants for financial means. Church organisations need to start taking care of their pastors and churches, then pastors will focus on attending to people’s needs,” Katenda said.

“As we are speaking, people only go to church because they depend on the churches for services such as baptisms and funerals, but they do not have faith in the day-to-day services of the church. Churches need to work hard to regain people’s trust by starting attending to people’s needs.”

He said churches need to develop programmes to train church leaders how to take care of their communities spiritually.

He added that churches must develop school programmes so that they can start unleashing people’s minds from an early age.

“During the liberation struggle, churches were assisting with the liberation struggle and they did it well. They’re now supposed to continue assisting with national development. They are supposed to have well-equipped schools, hospitals, universities and other services,” he said.