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12.02.2006 General News

Christians need care in labelling traditional practices

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Ho, Feb 12, GNA- The Reverend Father Francis Amuh, Director of Faith and Culture of the Ho Diocese of the Catholic Church has advised the Christian community to be careful in drawing conclusions regarding traditional practices.

Rev. Father Amuh, gave the advice at an encounter between some Chiefs and Clergy in the Volta Region to find common grounds for bringing the two institutions together in pursuit of common understanding between them towards maximizing their roles in the development of the region and the country.

The encounter was under the auspices of Operation Rescue Africa International, a non-governmental Christian organization based in Ho. It was the conviction of the organization that Chiefs and the Christian community in the region held the key to unlocking its, region's potentials and development.

Rev. Father Amuh observed that most Christians tended to conclude that Chiefs were pagans on account of their traditional positions and the practices associated with them.

He said it was important that Christians, especially the clergy got closer to chiefs and custodians of traditional practices and understood them and the beliefs that were associated with them. That way, Christians would be better informed and thereby positively help in influencing them.

Rev Father Amuh said some Chiefs were themselves little informed about some of the practices associated with their traditional positions and the measures to adopt to set some of them aside.

He said since fear was the reason why some chiefs tended to hold on to some of their practices rather reluctantly, it was incumbent on the Christian community to research into acceptable traditional approaches to effecting changes without fear of any consequences. Rev. Father Amuh said such research findings coupled with prayers, the Christian community would be able to help speed the pace of positive changes to enrich the chieftaincy institution to perform its role in helping to improve society.

He said it was therefore, against Christian principles to adopt a holier-than-thou attitude towards Chiefs and those who kept their company with a view to having a deeper insight into their practices. Rev. Father Amuh urged Christians to follow the example of Jesus Christ who got closer to such people and assisted them to overcome their fear and obstacles.

Some of the chiefs were emphatic that their traditional positions, not withstanding, they continued to be staunch Christians and were still engaged as such.

In their view a time would come when Chiefs would be granted the dispensation to express their wishes regarding the practices to associate their positions. The Chiefs commended INC for initiating the interaction and hoped it would be maintained and expanded in scope to encompass the entire country. 12. 02. 06.

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