Cleans­ing cer­e­mony af­ter pri­est’s ar­rest

Lesotho Times - - Front Page - Mo­halenyane Phakela

THE head of the Angli­can Church of Le­sotho (ACL), Bishop Mal­lane Adam Taaso, yes­ter­day held a cleans­ing cer­e­mony at St James and St Mary Cathe­dral in Maseru af­ter Sun­day’s dra­matic ar­rest of sus­pended Rev­erend Fa­ther Maieane Khaketla.

Rev Khaketla was ar­rested in the church’s sanc­tu­ary by po­lice of­fi­cers be­fore be­ing whisked to the Maseru Cen­tral Charge Of­fice where he was locked up in a cell for three hours.

The cleric was re­leased by the po­lice to his lawyer and on Mon­day ap­peared be­fore the Maseru Mag­is­trate’s Court where he was re­ferred to the of­fice of the Maseru Ur­ban Po­lice Com­mis­sioner, Se­nior Su­per­in­ten­dent Mot­latsi Map­ola, with­out any charges be­ing pre­ferred against him.

Ac­cord­ing to church mem­bers, the cleans­ing cer­e­mony, which con­sisted of burn­ing in­cense and sprin­kling holy wa­ter in­side the church build­ing, was meant to ex­or­cise the build­ing fol­low­ing the in­ci­dent.

Dur­ing the cer­e­mony, Bishop Taaso led parish­ioners from the church com­pound into the cathe­dral. Among the con­gre­gants was Deputy Prime Min­is­ter Mo­thetjoa Mets­ing and Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Min­is­ter Khotso Let­satsi.

In his ser­mon, Bishop Taaso said it was im­por­tant for the con­gre­ga­tion to par­tic­i­pate in the cleans­ing cer­e­mony since “the in­ci­dent” af­fected ev­ery­body.

“We are gath­ered here to­day to ask God to cleanse this holy sanc­tu­ary which was tainted by our evil ways. The cer­e­mony will help make the al­tar a sa­cred place once again. What hap­pened af­fects us all, hence we do it in one ac­cord,” he said.

Bishop Taaso then per­formed some rit­u­als at the pul­pit, ta­ble and other strate­gic places in the cathe­dral.

REV­EREND Fa­ther Maieane Khaketla is led away fol­low­ing his ar­rest in this grainy pic­ture taken by a mo­bile phone.

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