Crisis in Catholic Archdiocese of Juba (Part Two)
By: Anna Nimiriano
Yesterday on part one; I talked about some root causes of the crisis in Archdiocese of Juba which led to the division of priests in to groups. On part two, I am going to comment on the concern of some priests and elderly people at the Archdiocese of Juba on the appointment of Bishop Stephen Ameyu Martin Mulla by Vatican. According to the document, “Bishop Mulla will not be accepted to serve as Archbishop of Juba under any circumstances “. The reasons they gave were that: Bishop Mulla is “an open polygamist with two concubines, one in Gudule in Juba and the other one is in Khartoum/ Sudan in Wad Al Bashir area.”
If the Bishop is a polygamist, why does the management of Catholic Church allow him to continue in priesthood? Why releasing the secret by this time when he is expecting to assume a new position. The management is supposed to punish him during the time he was discovered to be having two concubines, if they proved that was correct. That is the weakness of the management for keeping such information up to this moment. They said they will not accept Bishop Mulla in the Diocese, given examples of other priests and bishops that were rejected by the communities in other states.
In this regards, Catholic Church has taken tribal lines. In the pass people of South Sudan were criticizing government of South Sudan with the issue of tribalism. What is happening in Catholic Diocese is the same idea. God has no color and identity. Christians, who believe in God and Jesus Christ, should see everybody equal in the eyes of God, for the reason that God created human being in his image. If Priests and Bishops are dividing themselves, how would they advise government? How could they address the matter of tribalism and love in the country? It is a bad experience in the time people of South Sudan are preparing for Christmas and for the sustainable peace in the country.
What could be Christmas message to the Christians of Archdiocese of Juba? It is unfortunate that both government and Catholic Church misused December which is the most important month of the year. In December 2013 conflict erupted in the country. Many people died and others ran to the neighboring countries. This year Catholic Church has crisis which is the spiritual war. How could people prepare their hearts to receive the birth of Christ? This situation should be resolved by the administration of Archdiocese of Juba. May God protect the people of South Sudan with an expected situation in December? Other denominations should pray for Catholic Church and the current situation. We meet again in the next edition.