Saturday, June 27, 2009

Getting people married in church is more important then saving them from malria

In Uganda the government recently announced a plan to distribute 17 million free mosquito nets to combat malaria. Apparently people have been using the mosquito netting for everything but combating malaria. Many people have been using them to make wedding gowns. And now people have been showing up at churches willing to get married because the government is giving out 'free wedding gowns'. So what does a church leader do when faced with the prospect of round the clock weddings? Does he try to correct the misconceptions of his congregants at a time when malaria is on the rise?
Describing the government plan to distribute mosquito nets as a "godsend", Rev. Joseph Masembe of Joseph's Catholic Church in Kamonkole village told The Analyst that his church was ready to run 24-7 to accommodate the spike in weddings. His church, like many others across the country, normally operates 4-1, that is, four hours once a week, on Sundays.

Asked whether converting mosquito nets into wedding gowns would not undermine government efforts to reduce malaria deaths, one church official said that "the soul is more important than the body."