The Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana (PCG), the Rt Rev. Prof. Joseph ObiriYeboahMante, has cautioned pastors against exploiting couples with infertility problems.
He also advised couples to go to hospitals when they face infertility challenge as they seek help from God.
Rev. Prof. Mante in an interview with the Ghanaian Times in Accra, yesterday said some pastors destroy marriages of couples who approach them for solution to their infertility problems.
“Some of these pastors, who claim they have spiritual powers to aid couples in having their own children either use social media or their own television stations to deceive vulnerable couples, who are in need of their own biological children,” he said.
Rt. Rev. Mante said, “the idea that every woman or couple should have children, is a first deception, therefore, society should desist from putting pressure on couples to have children.”
He noted that “some people think that bearing children is equivalent to femaleness, and that itself is wrong. There are some many things that woman can do apart from bearing children. Even there are so many people who have given birth and cannot take care of their children anyway”.
“Infertility issues are very sensitive, I want to beg reverend ministers that the work that we do is to help people and enhance their lives.If our work tends to become abusive, then we must stop. I have seen pictures and videos on social media of women going to pastors for help, but such pastors end up having sexual intercourse with them, all in the name of working on them spiritually,” Rt Rev.Mante said.
“The same God who tells us to avoid adulatory, fornication and lust is not a God that sent pastors to go and see the nakedness of people’s wives otherwise we are contradicting God,” he said.
Rt. Rev.Mantereminded religious leaders that not all infertility cases were spiritual, adding that “God has given doctors the knowledge to treat us whenever we are sick, infertility is another type of sickness so let us visit them for treatment.”
According to him, pastors are to transform lives by spreading the gospel and not to create problems for people.
Rev. Prof Mante said though child bearing is a blessing from God, pastors must not use that to abuse couples.
He said that “If these pastors do not repent, God will deal with them seriously because they are disgracing the Christian faith.”
Rt. Rev. Prof Mante called on couples to support each other in time of infertility, without putting the blame each other.
“There are so many men who cannot impregnate their wives due to low sperm count, mobility, and ejection of semen, therefore, it is not the sole fault of women when it comes to infertility,” he said.
Rt. Rev.Prof.Mante said training programmes on infertility should be championed by leaders in society.
“As religious leaders we must stand up against infertility stigmatisation rather than attributing such matters to spirituality and milking couples in attempt to helping them,” he said.
BY AGNES OPOKU SARPONG