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Why Negative Publicity Against Pastors Does Not Faze Believers

Why believers are unfazed by negative publicity about their Pastors

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 When the subject of men of God springs up in the news for one reason or another, angry outbursts about their wealth and how they are fleecing their congregations, quickly follow, forming a sizable portion of the discussions. Miracles are referred to as fake while followers are called gullible, if not brainwashed.

In these conversations, believers are mostly considered to be innocent unsuspecting victims who are being taken advantage of. Rarely however, does anyone including the media, care to critically investigate the reasons as to why a congregation may remain faithful to a man of God (or men of God) regardless of the unfolding negative publicity about him.

Instead, those at the fore of this verbal thrashing, keep getting baffled that regardless of how hard they verbally flog these men of God, believers are unfazed. The very next Sunday, they will be flocking these places in droves.

The purpose of this write-up therefore is to give perspective to the seeming deafness, call it continued gullibility of believers, in the face of clear evidence that their spiritual leaders have fallen short in some way. The typical life of a Ugandan, or any other person for that matter, can be used a reference in laboring this point.

Life in general is characterized by circumstances that require inner strength and motivation to sail through. For many, spiritual leaders act as the only purveyors of hope and inspiration during episodes of gloom and darkness. In this regard, when a leader has spiritually supported a follower through their darkest moments, this leader automatically becomes a lifetime hero in the eyes of the believer. What can one give for a person who dissuades you from committing suicide and instead lovingly shares several examples of people whose situation was worse, only for them to rise out of it? What can one give to such a person who revives their hope in their hopelessness through constant prayer and constant spiritual support? What many do not know, is that men of God may not publicize the number of people they support with a meal here, school fees there and rent sometimes.

Now, when these people successfully swim their way out of the murky waters of whatever challenge they were facing, that man of God remains dear to their hearts forever. It is only a fool that will not reward a person that stood besides them in their difficult times with loyalty and financial gifts. There are many of such in the Church.

Yet still, there are many that become lifetime faithfuls. By default, men of God will receive financial gifts and blind loyalty from those that feel indebted to them for one reason or another. Financial gifts can include cars, houses, food, shopping, trips abroad, cash and school fees for their children, as each congregant dims fit. Kindly note that these gifts are very different from the other biblical giving expected of a believer. The bible talks of tithes, offerings, first fruits and the like. There are believers will give all these on top of special gifts to their men of God.

So, while bystanders may consider these faithfuls gullible and brainwashed, the believers are happily and consciously giving to those they feel worthy of their earnings. They appear totally deaf to ensuing discussions against their men of God because they choose to focus on the testimony and experience with this person.

It is also true that in all honesty, men of God sometimes err with clear evidence against them. However, those who have benefitted from their ministries may choose to focus on the good they have received in their relationship with these people and ignore their shortcomings as human.

For example, if a person feels that a Pastor stood with them with spiritual support while they were vying for a political seat or any other job until they went through. Let us say that later, this Pastor is found guilty of adultery. The adultery does not take away the support and the testimony that was received by this person.

As discussions about certain men of God keeps coming up in the news, do not be surprised if congregations are unchanged or even, grow bigger. People are willing to look beyond the flaws of spiritual leaders if they feel that these leaders are giving them support that they cannot receive elsewhere.

Story by Agnes Namaganda, Politician/Communication Specialist