Moon over Africa
Moon has been gaining ground in Africa for some time now. Most significantly, and as I have noted previously on Talk to Action, Moon has successfully "turned" the conservative Zambian Roman Catholic Archbishop Emmanuel Milingo, and last December the Zambia UPF "Peace Embassy" hosted the inauguration of a break-away Catholic church for priests who wish to marry; the group is headed by Luciano Mbewe, a Milingo associate. Moon has also forged links with Zambian politicians, and former Prime Minister Malimba Masheke served as the chairman of his International Inter-religious Federation for World Peace, which preceded the UPF. Former President Kenneth Kaunda, meanwhile, has called Moon "a prophet".
Another former head of African state to have links with Moon is the elderly ex-President of Uganda, Godfrey Lukongwa Binaisa. In 2004 Binaisa caused some surprise by marrying, at the age of 83, a Japanese woman chosen by the Unification Church; current President Yoweri Museveni attended a subsequent civil ceremony in Uganda, where he tactlessly observed, in the words of a newspaper report, that
...the only time Africans came close to Japanese was during the World War II when the British recruited two battalions of Africans to fight in Burma.
Perhaps this was an ill-omen, as the marriage ended in divorce when Binaisa declined to donate some land to the Unification Church.
The UPF also played a role in calming unrest following the recent elections in Kenya. Kenya's Daily Nation reported at the time:
Government and opposition MPs Wednesday attended inter-religious peace prayers at Uhuru Park, and intensified demands for justice in the mediation led by former UN secretary general Kofi Annan.
The "Council of African Apostles" is a new neo-Pentecostal organisation chaired by Bishop Tudor Bismark, who is Zimbabwean. Details about it are scarce, but it appears to have links with the "International Coalition of Apostles", headed by the American neo-Pentecostal "spiritual warfare" and dominionist theology exponent C. Peter Wagner. Interestingly, the Council recently held a planning meeting in Zambia - probably this is just a coincidence, but perhaps Wagner ought to have a word with the Pope...
I have noted some of Moon's various international activities and connections here and here, as well as on my sub-blog, Ambassadors for Moon.
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