Clergy and pilgrims hoping to visit the Arthur Shearly Cripps Shrine last week were once again frustrated by excommunicated bishop Dr Norbert Kunonga who now claims to be in charge of the shrine and 78 Anglican churches in Masvingo Diocese.
The Anglican Diocese of Masvingo said its leaders advised Anglican worshippers against taking part in this year’s Shearly Cripps celebrations, scheduled for 29 to 31 July, after a court ruled that Dr Kunonga could not be prevented from attending the shrine.
A diocesan spokesperson told ACNS, “Kunonga got wind of the Diocesan preparations for commemoration of Arthur Shearly Cripps by pilgrims at the Arthur Shearly Cripps Shrine this month end, and he began to counter these efforts.
“He had been distributing flyers, pamphlets and sticking posters in our Churches in and around Chivhu town and Daramombe Mission. The same group which was moving around Chivhu went to Daramombe Mission on Saturday 23 July and put more posters at the Mission and then made a fire next to the entrance of the church and started roasting meat. Thereafter they took one of the Priest-in-Charge’s chickens and disappeared from the Mission.”
Kunonga claims he has taken over the Shrine and not only informed the District Police Officer of this, but also appeared on national television station ZBC TV on Sunday 31 June announcing he had taken over the Shrine plus all church properties: 45 in the Chikomba District and 33 in the Buhera District.
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