Thursday, 20 October 2011

Bishop of Harare visits Dublin

Jan de Bruijn, USPG Ireland, the Right Revd Chad Gandiya, Bishop of Harare, and the Revd Canon Patrick Comerford at the Dublin and Glendalough Synod (Photograph: David Wynne)

Patrick Comerford

The Bishop of Harare, the Right Revd Chad Gandiya, was in Dublin yesterday and today [Wednesday and Thursday] as part of a visit to Dublin organised by USPG Ireland.

Last night, he preached at the Community Eucharist in the Church of Ireland Theological Institute, and then I accompanied him to the Dublin and Glendalough Diocesan Synod, where he spoke movingly of the present situation in Zimbabwe.

Last night, I spoke at the synod about the work of this courageous and heroic church leader. Anglican churches, schools and charitable institutions in Zimbabwe have been attacked, seized and forcibly closed, that priests, teachers, care staff and church workers have been threatened, intimidated and physically attacked, and ordinary Christians have been beaten up and prevented from attending worship.

This morning, Bishop Chad took part in the Harvest Thanksgiving Service in the institute, before travelling on to the Diocese of Cashel and Ossory. On Saturday [22 October], Bishop Chad will preside at the Eucharist at 12 noon in Saint George’s Church, High Street, Belfast. After lunch, he will talk about the severe repression of Anglicans in his diocese and throughout Zimbabwe.

Bishop Chad was recently held at gunpoint with his family while his home was ransacked. The gunmen seemed most interested in taking the bishop’s communication equipment, targeting laptops and mobile phones while ignoring other portable valuables. All this was detailed in the dossier presented by Archbishop Rowan Williams to President Robert Mugabe last week, and USPG Ireland has been letting the world know about the attack on Bishop Chad and raising funds to replace the stolen equipment.

On Sunday morning, he is the guest preacher at the Sn g Eucharist at 11 a.m. in Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin.

Bishop Chad Gandiya with Archbishop Michael Jackson and Patrick Comerford at the Dublin and Glendalough diocesan synod last night