Church has role in society, Zuma says

2012-04-19 22:36

Durban - The church has a role to play to help the country succeed, President Jacob Zuma said in Durban on Thursday.

"The church has to participate in society, with government, to ensure programmes are put across to succeed, to make sure we are soldiers of God and to help the country become better," he said.

He said apartheid had helped create a culture of violence. During the struggle, the ANC linked up with churches to debate how to bring about change.

"The country needs more prayer and blessings to succeed. One of the aspects we pride ourselves on is the fact that this organisation was founded in a church in Mangaung.

Among those present were men of God. We always say we were blessed at birth in the history of the ANC."

Zuma said during the liberation struggle the party always knew it was with God, and no one could stop it from achieving its goals.

"Only when each South African can put food on the table can we say we have achieved freedom."

Zuma was speaking at a prayer service in honour of Bishop Denis Hurley at St Paul's Anglican Church. Hurley died in February 2008 when he was 88 years old.

During his 45 years in office Hurley "spoke truth to power", both in the church and society.

Zuma laid a wreath for Hurley at the Emmanuel Cathedral Church as part of the ANC's centenary celebrations. Hundreds of Zuma supporters cheered outside the cathedral gate.

  • howard.komati - 2012-04-19 22:57

    If President Zuma knws as he claims tht churches are important, the least he could do is to seek some divine intervention.

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 04:22

      "The church has a role to play to help the country succeed." Well Mr Zuma, it already has for far too long. So which god gave succour and support for Apartheid regime then? One good thing you could do, and you have achieved nothing yet, is to to distance religion from politics.

      Oscar - 2012-04-20 05:09

      Zaatheist, religion provides social structure with behavioural norms and standards in a society, something we desperately need in South Africa. Even if you do not believe in any god, do not belittle religion and the role it plays in makes you look stupid.

      Smell - 2012-04-20 05:55

      Not necessary to belittle Mr. Zuma about everything. He is right here. Religious orders have provided sanctuary to the downtrodden well before the social safety networks of democratic states ever saw the light. Think of the role the Anglican church played under Apartheid. Zaatheist, our tiresome and and tireless one-issue antagonist, please go and see a good Psychiatrist or at least a scoial worker - you really look deranged on your Facebook photo. Not all religious people are wide-eyed lunatics - some of us are really well educated scientists with a healthy dose of scepticism - but still feel comfortable to take the positive messages from ancient texts that have significantly helped shape humanity into what it is today. Apparently the Queen and Barack Obama attend church - how about your important buddies?

      Fredster - 2012-04-20 07:29

      Mr President, now practice what you preach!!!

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 08:37

      @Smell What have the queen and Obama have to do with me? The queen is the head of the UK Anglican Church so she goes whether she wants to or not. Obama is the head of the largest god bothering democracy in the world and would not get elected if he did no pander to religion. Read his books, he is probably a closet atheist. As for me being deranged. You claim to have "a healthy dose of scepticism" but you still believe in a book that has talking animals, wizards, witches, demons, sticks turning into snakes, food falling from the sky, people walking on water, zombies flying through the air and all sorts of magical, absurd and primitive stories. Wow. You are a healthy sceptic. Please explain what positive messages I can obtain from you ancient texts that will be of assistance to me in my life.

      bluzulu - 2012-04-20 10:25

      Religion or their structures did not serve RSA in the Past so what's it's stake in the Future?

      Jacqui - 2012-04-20 13:16

      Smell, well educated scientists?. Wow.

      Smell - 2012-04-21 06:38

      Body Brain Performance Institute? - smells clearly New Age to me... No science or tradition. Or otherwise enlighten me.

  • Garth - 2012-04-19 22:58

    Hahahaha... At the rate this country is going down hill I suppose only prayer can save it now!

      Randomhero6661 - 2012-04-20 10:04


  • mastersvoice - 2012-04-19 23:00

    It is ironic that Zuma has suddenly developed a need for South Africa to succeed! Maybe some conference is around the corner, and he now has to pay lip service to voters and supporters again. Its the season for empty Zuma promises once again!

  • boramk - 2012-04-19 23:12

    Erm, separation of church and state?

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 04:24

      @Stephen "Zuma has no respect for religion." Fail! He has far too much respect. We need less religion, not more stupidity.

      Oscar - 2012-04-20 05:10

      Zaatheist, religion provides social structure with behavioural norms and standards in a society, something we desperately need in South Africa. Even if you do not believe in any god, do not belittle religion and the role it plays in makes you look stupid.

      Peter - 2012-04-20 08:00

      @zaatheist - Actually he has no respect show us proof that he has too much respect? What we need is less people like you! who force your beliefs, of which you have none, on others. Your no better than Zuma

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 08:42

      @Oscar There is no substantive evidence for an omnipotent father-figure deity as postulated by the Christian/Jewish/Islamic tradition. So without religion can there be morality? Certainly, because true moral behavior is based upon simple self-interest. The guiding ethic is to truly act in your own best interest. That would mean treating all people fairly, honestly and, as it says in the Hippocratic Oath, "Cause no harm." Religions invent all other "sins" to increase their control over people. @Peter The fact that he pandering to religion demonstrates that he has too much respect for it. What else would you like to know?

  • daniel.motlhatlhedi - 2012-04-19 23:14

    the only tme wen pple remember church nd God is when they are in trouble. Whats up mr president

  • Phil - 2012-04-19 23:18

    Church has a role in museums and history books.

      Peter - 2012-04-20 07:45

      @Phil and you have a role in hell

      michael.a.devilliers - 2012-04-20 08:16

      @Peter and I think you have a role in a mental asylum... with the rest of them.

      Peter - 2012-04-20 08:20

      @michael.a.devilliers - lol why?

  • Phil - 2012-04-19 23:20

    Is there an election on the horizon? That's the only time that politicians flirt with religious people.

      War Lord - 2012-04-20 01:16

      You mean whore with them and prostitute them. We have largely become like a prostitute and the ANC never stops screwing us, but like a delinquent user, never pays for the pleasure of screwing us.

  • Crracker - 2012-04-19 23:29

    At least we should consider that he does not write the speeches.

      War Lord - 2012-04-20 01:18

      Would that be because he doesn't have time or can't write? Is he too busy running around collecting Viagra pills for the next young maiden?

  • barry.mcbride - 2012-04-19 23:50

    LOL, Zuma must’ve conveniently missed the ‘one marriage/wife only’ part of the New Testament in the Bible!

  • Amanda Barratt - 2012-04-20 00:19

    No Mr Preseedent, the church only has a role to play in subjugation. Let it stick to what it does best.

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 04:27

      "Let it stick to what it does best." Like screwing gullible people out of their hard earned money. Oh, wait. That is exactly was the government is already doing.

  • levi.moleme - 2012-04-20 00:37

    Dear Mr Zuma, first u say ANC wil rule until Jesus comes, then u go on to say, I quote: "as Africans, long before the arrival of religion and [the] gospel, we had our own ways of doing things" {}....nd nw you are appealing to the churches...more evidence of double standards in the ANC, you people always favour an ideology wen it suits about propaganda. Im paitiently waiting 2 see the Zuma-Mantashe conglomerate go down in Mangaung.

      Themba - 2012-04-21 09:46

      I don't think Zuma thinks about what he says, or remembers anything he said in the past

  • esethu3 - 2012-04-20 00:47

    But why people always try and pull negatively is something that we can all agree on despite our political affiliations.

  • Elkita - 2012-04-20 00:52

    Look who's talking about the church.Has this zuma no shame at all.Trying to collecvt voters again.He will try anything in the book.Even our Lord.He is a disgrace to society.

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 04:29

      "Even our Lord.He is a disgrace to society."?????? I think I agree with you. Religion is an insult to human dignity. With or without it, you'd have good people doing good things and evil people doing bad things, but for good people to do bad things, it takes religion. Steven Weinberg - Nobel Laureate

  • Jabulani - 2012-04-20 01:23

    Mr president,yes, u are right. But u are contradicting yourself. How can u corporate with churches when u can't listen to them? Information Bill, E-tolling system, polygamy and dictatorship among others. Churches are not supporting such things!

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 04:34

      But he has learned well from the churches and religions - Information Bill - the churches have been peddling lies for centuries and withholding facts and information from sheeple. Child abuse scandals? E-tolling - Same as tithing. Polygamy - Many of the Old Testament Prophets and Patriarchs had multiple wives. Dictatorship - Inquisition, Saudi Arabia, North Korea, Iran .....

      goodman.segage - 2012-04-20 06:56

      As for polygamy, if u Jabulani are not faithful to your lover, then you should know you are partaking in polygam realm. As long as a man whosoever goes and sleep around with a woman other than his1 lover, That I call it polygamy on trail. Our people should becareful before make personal utturences. Do as u wud like them do it to u. I'm a born agai; and our responsibility as a church is to pray for the leaders to hear what God wants asto lead His people. I'm out

      Peter - 2012-04-20 07:54

      @zaatheist - All those things existed without religion, lies, withholding facts, Child abuse. Your agrugment is therefore null and void

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 11:51

      @Peter (Who said I was religious?) Tithing existed without religion? TruesBob? You do have an interesting mind! As for morality, you guys (the believers in the invisible magic man) claim you have a higher degree of morality then non-believers. So we can hold you to a higher standard. See Oscar's comment above about "religion provides social structure with behavioural norms and standards in a society". Which is of course BS. In fact Christian dogma is totally immoral. I can elaborate if you like.

  • Kaizer - 2012-04-20 01:30

    Zuma must repent n accept Jesus as his saviour n lord.U dnt go 2 church u heading 2 mangaung.Wr u wit God in de arms deal n wasting taxpayer money?

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 06:00

      Ag shame. Kaizer has been so brain addled with Jesus he has not paid attention in his English classes. 01:30. Isn't is way past your bedtime? Get Mummy to make you a nice glass of warm milk. Then kneel next to your bed and pray to Jesus. Tuck yourself up nice and warm and Jesus will look after you*** till morning. *** and bugger all those homeless, fly-ridden starving children in Africa who Jesus and God don't give a damn about.

      Peter - 2012-04-20 07:48

      @zaatheist and what are you doing to help all those homeless fly-ridden starving children in Africa who Jesus and God don't give a damn about. Your a hypocrite so stfu

      michael.a.devilliers - 2012-04-20 08:19

      @Peter so, because I don't help people in Africa because I don't possess infinite money or wisdom to cure world hunger and resolve the right of the poor your omnipotent god of unlimited power as doesn't have to do anything. I think that's a load of BS.

      Peter - 2012-04-20 08:32

      @michael.a.devilliers - "your omnipotent god of unlimited power" who says im not an aethiest? You and zaatheist have no right what so ever to bash other peoples beliefs, your obviosuly an atheist and your allowed that choice so why must other not be allowed the same choice of what to believe? Dont act all hight and mighty as if you have all the answers

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 11:53

      Hello Peter I support the charity Doctors Without Borders with a monthly donation. DWB is a secular charity that helps these people on a daily basis. Check! Your move I think........

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 11:56

      Peter Are you trying to hide the fact that you are a sky daddy believer, again. I know, it is an embarrassment to believe nonsense. Anyone reading you comments here can see you are a faithhead. Now you are playing "don't bash other's beliefs" card. Pathetic. You are a poor liar. Come on. A bit of honesty helps.

  • braamc - 2012-04-20 04:29

    Agree Zuma. Your government must focus on discipline and higher moral values, starting with you, this is why we see youngsters rape and murder and behave like savages. Bring out the good in people and keep things "good"

  • Carry - 2012-04-20 06:53


  • Henry - 2012-04-20 08:38

    I agree with the president. We need to pray tirelessly (as a society) asking the Almighty to heal our society. If seven men/male can gangrape a teenage girl and none amongst them conscious enough to see the wrong in what they do, then we have a sick society. A society that needs both professional and spiritual help. We need to pray that God helps this society, as it's youth is often exposed to too much drug abuse, alcohol abuse and pornography. We really need his help so that the next generation, cannot be exposed to such cruelty.

      Endof - 2012-04-20 08:59

      Henry, you can pray all you like. God never has, never does and never will help society fix their problems. So you should stop asking a non-existent totalitarian puppet master to bail society out of the mess it created for itself. Take ownership of what you can control and influence and do it yourself instead of copping out to an utterly useless man-made delusion all the time. How does it never occur to you that God sits there idly watching these things happen and yet you still pray to him for assistance you know he will never provide? He has to be the most bone-idle useless being ever imagined.

      zaatheist - 2012-04-20 12:10

      @Henry Dear God. Zaatheist here. Henry suggested I get down on my knees, close my eyes and hold my hands in supplication. Look, I know. I know. I know that the last time I asked you for something I was just 5 years old but Henry and his friends are becoming desperate because you never do anything. Are you still alive? Anyway, all I am asking is that you start ignoring the prayers of all those millionaire sports stars asking for your help to win more and make more money and to please help this society as the young people are often exposed to too much drug abuse, alcohol abuse and pornography. Please help so that the next generation cannot be exposed to such cruelty. I look forward to seeing you start cleaning up the place. Say, starting tomorrow. Great! Thanks god.

  • thelittlegreenhouse - 2012-04-20 12:44

    The Head of the State: "Only when each South African can put food on the table can we say we have achieved freedom." The Head of the Church: "For ye have the poor with you always, and whensoever ye will ye may do them good…" Mark 14:7 I hear someone proposing a Perpetual and Futile Revolution.

  • Jacqui - 2012-04-20 13:15

    'To help the country succeed'. I thought that was the president's job. Stupid git.

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