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“Pastors today are after money” – Rev. John Phillip

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One of the founding elders of the Christian faith in Botswana, Reverend John Phillip has spoken strongly against the love of money by most of the local pastors, saying they have forgotten to take care of the widows, orphans and less privileged members of the community. Rev.

Phillip was responding to a new book called Rich Preacher and The Poor Christian by Apostle Earnest Seakgosing, which was launched recently in Gaborone. Phillip told The Midweek Sun that the book exposes the greed of some local pastors who are preaching the wrong Gospel to get money from vulnerable people. “It’s an eye-opening book, and the author has balanced and articulated everything well. Contrary to what some false prophets say, blessings come from God and not from people giving them money,” he said.

He commended 41 year-old Seakgosing for his boldness in writing the book. “He has responded well to a given situation. It should have taken an organisation to respond to this situation, but he did. Just as banks speak against fraud Batswana should know that blessings are not bought. God gives his children with love,” he said. He added that modern pastors have strategised their sermons in such a way that they benefit money from the congregants. “They pray for you to get rich and come up with other ways to take your money again. We need to be wise. This book will help many people because it speaks nothing but the truth,” he said.

Describing the marks of false prophets, Seakgosing says that the devil does not come with horns and a bushy tail to deceive. He informs that false prophets and teachers usually will pick the most respected dress code which the God-sent usually wears. “If it is a white shirt with a white collar – that is what they will wear. When the fashion shifts to designer suits, they will be seen with such. They will do that and put a twist to it,” he says. He also warns that false prophets prophesy in the name of Jesus, to deceive people.

They also pretend to be used by the Holy Spirit, he says, citing 1 Kings 22:24 for reference. The other thing is that false prophets focus on themselves and not the people and constantly remind people that they (themselves) are in charge. “When they lead a congregation, they always remind everyone about their authority, but they don’t have Godly authority. They don’t like to be exposed.

These guys always demand loyalty. They teach people to be loyal to themselves than to God. Failure to be loyal to them, they call you rebellious and curse you,” he says, adding that their idea is to keep their loyal followers in total bondage and in fear of them. Seakgosing has observed that false teachers can run sermons on loyalty for months until their followers come crawling-literally on their knees to pledge their loyalty to them. “From these kinds, flee as far as you can child of God. They are starving wolves,” he cautions. His take is that people should start reading the Bible to avoid being manipulated with twisted scriptures.

‘They commercialise the Gospel.’According to the author, false prophets and teachers sell ‘something that has the anointing in it.’ An example is the anointing oils or anointed blankets so that when you wear them no witch can come near you. Or an alabaster perfume so that when you get into an interview, you will get the job faster. “Their altar calls are always about who wants to be a millionaire? Who wants more power? Who wants this and that?” he says. His observation is also that lovers of money parading as pastors only bless their funders. “I visited a church one day. When it was time for giving, they would separate offerings from tithes.

The pastor would dip his hands in the anointing oil and laid them on the tithers, stating that God should touch the hearts of those that did not tithe because they rob him,” he says, countering that God does not rob people and that pastors twist the Scriptures to make God appear like a mafia. Other pastors require money they call ‘a seed’ to be seen and accessed, says the author.

He also warns that false teachers speak vanities. For example, they tell you that if you sow a five-dollar seed, you will reap a five-dollar wife if that seed is being sown into marriage, and the same tactic is used on people who want cars and houses. False pastors also emphasise ‘payment’ for themselves than giving to God, according to the author. Their strategy here, he says, is that giving to the man of God, you will get blessed. He advises Christians to focus on God, informing that Christianity is not a religion but a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ, who is the only mediator between God and man. The book is available at Lesedi Christian Centre.

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‘Give us water’ campaign ups the ante

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WHITHER THE WATER: The water tanks in Molepolole have not been of any help to the residents

The ‘Give us water” campaign at Molepolole is gaining momentum. The group made up of the young and old is determined to fight for a basic need of life that has over the years proved scarce in the village – water.

The residents have gone thirsty for many years and to date, the situation remains the same. The taps have completely dried up and they survive by buying water on a daily basis.
Early last year, the people of Molepolole felt enough was enough and even petitioned Water Utilities Corporation (WUC).

According to the campaign’s Publicity Secretary Oreeditse Nyatso, WUC then responded to say that it was aware of the situation in Molepolole and would normalise things in the near future. However, that has not happened and they continue to suffer.

Seeing that things were stagnant, the campaign committee appealed to the community during the festive season to make suggestions on how best to find solutions. “Bakwena have grown impatient and it was evident during the meeting that they go to work dirty, they drink almost any drop, clean or not, to try and quench their thirst,” he said. Nyatso told this publication that the Molepolole people have lost confidence in WUC.

They were even angered by the WUC press release on the 30th of December 2018 which attributed the water challenges to power cuts. They are disappointed that the blame has now being pinned on Botswana Power Corporationn (BPC) when they have been struggling for the longest period.

Given the current situation, Molepolole is said to be planning to ask the government to bring back the Department of Water Affairs. They believe WUC has failed Molepolole dismally since it took over from Department of Water Affairs in 2011.

Another meeting with all stakeholders is slated for 26th January 2019. Meanwhile, WUC has assured residents via a press release a fortnight ago that they are working around the clock to restore the situation.

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‘It breaks my heart to see my child sick’

Keletso Thobega

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A CRY FOR HELP: Young mother Lesedi Pilane is appealing for help as she seeks to get her child healed. The liver transplant will cost P400 000

A Mochudi mother of a baby with liver disease is praying day and night for her child to get a liver transplant. A sick child is every mother’s nightmare. All one can do is hope for the best. This is the situation that 23-year old Lesedi Pilane finds herself in. Pretty with beady bright eyes and soft features, the soft-spoken mother is heartbroken by the pain and anguish that her child Rorisang Nathan Pilane endures.

Rorisang is in the progressive stage of liver disease and needs an urgent liver transplant. When Pilane spoke to The Midweek Sun yesterday, she had just returned from a check-up at Princess Marina hospital. Mother and child are currently at Deborah Retief Memorial hospital in Mochudi where baby Rorisang has been admitted since 1 January 2019. Pilane and baby have been in and out of hospital for the past few months since Rorisang was diagnosed with biliary artesia (liver disease) at three months old.

Biliary artesia is defined as a rare disease of the liver and bile ducts that occurs in infants and is characterised by obliteration or discontinuity of the extrahepatic biliary system, resulting in obstruction to bile flow. This progressive liver problem is a chronic disease that often becomes evident shortly after birth with signs of yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes (jaundice). Bile eventually builds up in the liver and damages it, leading to scarring as well as loss of liver function and tissue.

The unemployed Pilane seems overwhelmed by the situation and admits that it has been a tall order to come to terms with living with and taking care of an ill child. Pilane is however taking it all in her stride. After her child was born, she did not suspect that anything was wrong. They went for the usual six weeks check-up after birth and the nurses also gave them a clean bill of health.
“I only realised that something was wrong when the baby’s eyes started turning yellow and his urine was also dark yellow. His tummy was also stiff and slightly swollen. I found this strange and that is when I went back to the clinic.”

That is when Pilane was given a referral to Princess Marina Hospital where they confirmed that Rorisang has biliary artestia. Pilane went to register Rorisang at the transplant unit.
At four months old a Kasai operation (surgical treatments performed on children with biliary artesia) was done on Rorisang but it was not successful. They told her that operations of this nature are often done when a child is two months and below. “At Princess Marina hospital, I was told that his liver was already damaged so he needs a liver transplant. I was even told that the situation was so dire that he would live up to a year and a half.”

She did not receive any assistance. She was informed that the doctors were attending a workshop in India. After some time she was contacted and told that she could be his living donor if a donor is not found. “We did tests and everything seemed to be going well. They told me that they had taken the blood samples to a lab in South Africa but never heard from them again.” Pilane says that they were admitted at Princess Marina hospital in March last year.

In April an operation was done on Rorisang to drain bile from the liver. Rorisang was given medication to support his liver but she says it is not working as his situation is still deteriorating.
Pilane was informed that a liver transplant in India costs P400, 000 and P1.3 million in South Africa. Pilane, who is unemployed, survives off the generosity of family members, who she says have been supportive.

She says it is difficult to leave him with anyone else. “He does not cry or complain when he is sick so it is difficult for those who do not know to take care of him. I know that once he sleeps often or looks drawn then it means that he is not feeling well.” Of late, baby Rorisang has not been eating well. “He only drinks milk. He has now lost a lot of weight. Dieticians have recommended him diets and ordered him some foods but he refuses to eat and if you force him to, he actually vomits,” his mother says.

Oddly, a few months ago, baby Rorisang could gain a kilogramme per day. The doctors told his mother that this was because of water accumulation and explained that it was not good as it would compress the organs such as the lungs and make him struggle to breathe. “They said we could lose him before the operation so they suggested that he be medically tapped in order to reduce the water.” Baby Rorisang still faces medical challenges right now.

His eyes, private parts and legs are swollen but his size has reduced since the tapping. Pilane says that she is unsure what the current state is with the liver transplant. “I was told that government only funds one liver transplant patient per year. My particulars are with them so I do not know whether they will assist me.”

On Monday, Pilane was contacted and asked to come to Princess Marina Hospital for a blood test and cross match. She is praying for a breakthrough for her child and in the meantime she takes each day as it comes. “I can’t eat, I can’t sleep. I am stressed. I have put all my faith in God.” At the time of going to print, Pilane was still waiting for a response regarding the possibility of a liver transplant.  She has also received request to assist from a few people and has already sought assistance to get a trust fund account opened for Rorisang.

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