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Anglican Church in Malawi overwhelmed by Anglicans who commit suicide

Anglican Church in Malawi overwhelmed by Anglicans who commit suicide

By Godfrey Olukya
VOL African correspondent
March 29, 2022

The Anglican Church in Malawi has said that it is shocked by the big number of Anglican Malawians who commit suicide.

According to Malawi 24 news agency, the Anglican Bishop of Diocese of Upper Shire Brighton Vitta Malasa says the church's hands are tied on the issue of granting full Christian funerals for people who die by suicide.

Bishop Malasa said this at Chilema in Zomba during a diocesan 2-day retreat conducted by priests in the diocese as one way of recapturing their spiritual life. During the retreat, priests discussed how they should handle suicide funerals as cases are on the increase and have negatively impacted the church and the country as a whole.

"The priests discussed how they should handle suicide funerals as there are a lot of incidents such, that when it comes to the church their hands are tied," said Malasa.

He then revealed a plan for the church to conduct research on the cause of the rise of suicide cases in the country was in order.

Suicide cases have been on the rise in Malawi in recent years and there have been complaints that churches have been refusing to grant full Christian funerals to those who die by suicide.

The Anglican Church currently handles funerals for people who die by suicide but the church's service at such funerals is usually brief compared to other funerals.

Priests during the retreat prayed and promised to continue praying for the suicide cases to drop, as the rise has shocked the church.

During the retreat Malasa also urged priests in the diocese to do more charitable work during this lenten period.

Malasa said the retreat has helped them as priests to discuss and encourage each other in praying together, fasting and helping the needy as pillars of the lent period.

He also said they have encouraged each other on the difficulties that priests face and how they can overcome those challenges.

The Archdeacon for Namwela, Masuku Parish, the Rev. Austin Lwanda said the retreat has helped the priests to shape their work and behavior in doing the work of Christ.

He said the retreat gave them time to reflect on doing social work and helping the needy among others.

The retreat was conducted under the theme "We should not kill him......He is our brother". (Genesis 37:27)


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