Rev Moon's Breakaway Catholic Church Launched in Zambia
Richard Bartholomew printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Sat Dec 29, 2007 at 09:42:58 AM EST
From The Times of Zambia:

A SPLINTER Catholic Church called the Catholic Apostolic National Church of Zambia has been launched with Archbishop-elect, Luciano Mbewe, calling for more priests to join the church and fulfill their God-given role by marrying...Archbishop Mbewe said during the ceremony held at Peace Embassy that there were moments that the priests hoped the restoration of married priests would be made possible.

Standing behind all this, of course, is Reverend Moon and the Unification Church, which has for some time been making inroads into Zambia through former Catholic Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo and obliging politicians such as former President Kenneth Kaunda. Various countries have "Peace Embassies"; they are an outreach of the Universal Peace Federation, which exists to raise Moon's credibility through interfaith and "peacemaking" activities. Archbishop Mbewe (formerly plain Father Anzanga Mbewe) is a disciple of Milingo, and he runs the Zambian chapter of Married Priests Now, which in the USA is headed by George Augustus Stallings, another former Catholic priest and who now presides over a group called the Imani Temple. Stallings has received gifts from Reverend Moon, and he hosted the rather strange "coronation" of Moon in Washington in 2004.

Milingo himself has been associated with Moon since 2001, when he surprised the world by marrying a Korean Unificationist named Maria Sung. However, he split from his wife shortly afterwards, and told journalists that

...the Moonies had plans: to found a well-financed parallel Catholic Church in Africa, autonomous from Rome, with its own hierarchy headed by Milingo.

Milingo also claimed that a document proving this had been stolen from his suitcase in Italy.

In 2006 Moon was back with his wife, and back with the Unification Church. He told a Married Priests Now conference that in Korea he had met "many Catholics and Catholic married priests who are in the Unification movement", and in April of this year he expressed publicly his belief that Moon is the Messiah. However, despite all this obvious evidence that Milingo is now Moon's creature, he continues to make statements denying he is a Unificationist. He has also more than once publicly insisted that he has no interest in forming a rival church for disaffected Catholics in Africa, and in July 2006 he told the National Catholic Reporter that "We have no ambition at all, in any way, to do anything of that kind." Surely that must now be judged to be a bald-faced lie?

First the "Anglican realignment" and now this... Africa is becoming a refuge for offbeat splinter groups from old-line American churches.

by unworthy on Sat Dec 29, 2007 at 10:29:38 AM EST

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