As Methodists prepare to elect a new bishop of the Liberia Annual Conference (LAC), interim Bishop Arthur F. Kulah has called on members to consider reconciliation, unity and peace as essential to ensuring a smooth process in December.
In a pastoral letter issued in Monrovia recently, Bishop Kulah said reconciliation is a biblical word meaning bringing people together to settle their differences.
Bishop Kulah explained that reconciliation is not an event but a holistic process which leads to results oriented undertakings.
He quoted Jesus Christ as saying peacemakers will be called children of God.
“Years ago United Methodists voted that all pastors should not be members of political parties in the country,” Bishop Kulah recalled.
Such a situation occurred, he said “because a pastor and his parishioners became members of different political parties which generated conflict.”
He, however, clarified that as Liberians parishoners have the right to vote as citizens of Liberia.
Bishop Kulah said Presidential and Legislative elections will be held in 2017 which is the reason the interim leadership is taking reconciliation very seriously.
He said if the UMC can bring Methodists together to carry out a Christlike and smooth election, Liberians can also do the same for the country.
In his pastoral letter, Bishop Kulah observed that in the UMC there are many educated people and where there are so many educated people, there will be some (conflict) of ideas.
The former Truth and Reconciliation Commissioner said there is always unity in diversity and some Methodists may not see clearly how Bishop John G. Innis may have led the UMC.
Prior to the December elections Bishop Kulah said, “I will reach out to the old, women, men and young adults, young people with a message that we have a job and responsibility to perform for our people and church.”
Bishop Kulah described the United Methodist Church as one of the most organized churches in the world and a chain of communication goes to all local churches.
On the need for peace in the church, Bishop Kulah said “Working on peace requires work because while a situation may bring peace another may not due to different circumstances.”
Asked about the source of funding for the UMC bishop’s election, Bishop Kulah said, Jesus Christ is the centrepiece for the provision of the funds.
“We are only custodians, stewards, and keepers so when we ask God, funds will be provided because resources do not bring programs, programs bring resources,” Bishop Kulah asserted.