SDA to retrench pastors

Looming retrenchment exercise that is expected to start soon has divided pastors at Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) South Botswana Conference.

Mmegi has it in authority that the church will next month lay off seven pastors for underperformance.

A source within the church told Mmegi yesterday that the church members had been tasked to evaluate their pastors’ performance. But it emerged that the members have not been given the terms of reference for the evaluation.

“The retrenchment process is illegal since the pastors have not been taken on board through counselling process.  The painful thing is that the concerned members have not formally been informed but they heard the bad news from church elders who are against the exercise.

“Some senior pastors have also advised the office of the president of South Botswana Conference that a better solution should be sought rather than to opt for retrenchment,” a source said.

Another source said the pastors are divided into two factions since some believe that the exercise is done because of the forthcoming elections in which the president and executive secretary’s respective positions for South Botswana Conference  will be contested for.

“We suspect this is the target to take down those who are not in support of the current president. South Botswana Conference is marred by factions and senior pastors and church elders had long been told to intervene. It is alleged that some pastors are rebelling against the president,” the source said.

The source further revealed that some church branches that fall under South Botswana Conference had written letters to the president protesting against retrenchment of the pastors.

The fears of the church members are that the issue is likely going to split the church. 

The source said the hope of the disgruntled pastors now depend on senior pastors and church elders to intervene.

The source said pastors are demanding the church explain to them whether it has financial problems or not and how their performance is measured.

“They believe that retrenchment is not going to be done fairly,” the source said.

SDA South Botswana conference president Lesotho Mosarwe who initially said they are not allowed to talk to the media regarding church issues and referred questions to the national office, later sent a short message reading: “We will come back to you after consultation with our consultants on the matter.”

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