This was the message the Anglican Church of Melanesia’s Archbishop Leonard Dawea preached on Sunday as the church commemorated the first Sunday of Advent.
Members of the ACoM Council of Bishops were assigned to different parishes in Honiara with one message – to condemn all evil activities that happened on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday last week and to call for repentance and respect for all people.
Archbishop of the Church of Melanesia, Leonard Dawea, told the congregation at Saint Barnabas Cathedral that he could not believe how humanity in a so-called happy isles or Christian country has gone to such an extent.
“How Christians were able to put behind them the love of God and choose to walk in darkness.
“God who creates us all, regardless of (who) we are, hates to see his creation destroying each other.
“His heart bleeds for those who have been left homeless, who in the blinking of an eye lost everything they had,” Archbishop Dawea said.
He went on to say, what happened since Wednesday last week tested our true nature as Christians and Disciples of Christ.
“…unfortunately, we have failed yet again as a Christian nation, a happy isles.
“A lot of people, good Christian people found themselves caught in these unchristian actions and behaviours,” he said. “Christianity is not spoken, it is a lived reality; not theoretical, it is practicality,” he said.
Therefore, he urged Christians not to be misled by the pleasures and excitements of this world. It is so sad that a lot of Christians became too occupied with greed and hatred and cannot resist the temptation to looting those who are already victims.
“We have not been good neighbours, we have all acted as the priest and Levite who walk by the man on the road. We have not been the Good Samaritan,” Archbishop Dawea said.
He said the unfortunate events last week indicated that to some Christians, God is a temporary entity for good days.
Archbishop Leonard then challenged the church to ditch all ungodly behaviours, not just of the rioting and looting but in all areas of life.
“The Advent of Christ should open our horizons to see and value people as they are regardless of colour, language, race, ethnicity, social standing, gender and religiosity.
“It is most clear that we are all God’s handmade, underneath the physical differences lies the red blood of commonality.
“It is what speaks to each other of our common value, not only as Christians, but as people, human beings,” Archbishop Dawea said.
He said now is the time to be neighbours to the victims of fire, rioting and looting.
“We can pray, but our prayers need to be accompanied by genuine actions,” concluded the Archbishop.
Prayer for our Nation Solomon Islands
O eternal God, bless Solomon Islands, guide our rulers, guard our people and give us peace.
Grant to all our leaders a desire to serve and lead our country in ways of justice and peace.
Help us to love and serve one another and unite us in your Son Jesus Christ our Lord,
Who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen