A Zambian married woman has warned her husband that she will seek divorce if he insists on having the church prophet prosecuted for inappropriately touching her womanhood in church while praying for her to conceive, the Zambian Observer Religion reports.
Last week we reported that a fuming Lweendo Mudenda from Twapia compound in Ndola dragged his prophet to court after witnessing him touching his wife all over her body and especially her womanhood while praying for her.
He said he was not amused with how Prophet Hot-Soup Commander 1 was ministering to his wife.
“Where is it written in the bible that when praying for the fruits of the womb you have to touch someone’s breasts, waist and the v*g*na? It’s nonsense,” he spewed before the court.
He and his wife have been married for virtually ten years without having children, so the prophet promised to make her conceive by praying for her.
The delightful story would turn a deep-dive into the worst after the prophet got too handsy with his wife in the process, touching her breasts and womanhood, in full view of other worshippers in the church.
Witnessing this in full glance, Mudenda’s temper reportedly flared up that he almost beat up the prophet, only to be held back by the congregation few.
Mrs Mudenda, however, has no issues with the prophet’s ecclesiastical conduct that she even defended him before court, saying as a man of God he was in order to touch her wherever he wished as he was being led by the Holy Spirit to do what he was doing to her in order for her to conceive.
Regardless of her husband being adamant that Commander 1 was wrong and acted out of selfish whims, she has even challenged her husband during a family meeting which was attended by her relatives and those of her husband including 5 senior church members that if he does not withdraw the case against her prophet, she will be left with no option but to divorce him.
Mrs Mudenda said the prophet was right to touch her where he touched her as he was delivering her so that she could be able to conceive after being in a marriage for close to 10 years without children.
She said medical doctors touch and see married women’s private parts, but they are not taken to court. She wondered as to why the prophet who only touches breasts and private parts for contact prayers should be taken to court when those in hospitals do worse things but are not taken to court.
“When my young sister was giving birth, the male nurse was there, and he was the one assisting her to deliver but no one took him to court. I will stop being your wife if you don’t withdraw the case against my innocent prophet”, she told her husband and relatives.
Touching another person sexually without their consent is sexual assault. However, cases involving the church are problematic to deal with as they are done consensually.
Yet, because there are power differentials between pastors and their congregation, sometimes pastors are tempted to abuse the people they lead. Most pastoral abuse is male pastors taking advantage of female congregants.
Ruefully, discussions of the sexually abusive pastors tend to relieve the male pastor of responsibility for his actions. All too often the blame is placed on the woman, who is viewed as a predatory female in a manner that perpetuates “the misogyny of our theological heritage.”
The excuses offered — female turpitude, wifely incompetence and diabolic intervention — relieve the male pastor and the institution he serves of responsibility for his actions.
Pastoral counselling and private prayer meetings are some of the pastor’s professional tasks that are likely to offer opportunities for sexual abuse.
Many women don’t speak out about sexual abuse by pastors because, along with enduring terrible damage to their own self-esteem and relentless public shredding of their reputations, they will suffer the loss of personal and community relationships — what may amount to a devastating social and spiritual exile.
The time-honoured response to such situations is to blame women — the “other woman” or the pastor’s wife — for the sexual transgressions of a male minister.
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