NYAMASHEKE- Religious leaders in Shangi sector, Nyamasheke district, at a two-day family planning workshop last week pledged to strengthen their role in promoting the use of family planning.
The workshop was organized by the Presbyterian Church of Rwanda together with the Ministry of Finance under the theme “What the Bible says about the procreation of humans.”
Noting that the role of the church was critical in the family planning campaign, participants blamed some religious leaders who discourage people from using family planning, on the basis of religion.
“The word of God doesn’t contradict the message of family planning. The bible calls upon parents to be blessings to their children, not a curse. How will a parent with uncountable children ever bless them in any way?” asked Pastor Emmanuel Muhozi, in charge of training at Rwanda Presbyterian Church.
Muhozi urged religious leaders to lead the family planning campaign, since all Rwandans have religious affiliations to which they subscribe.
“If anyone should change the world, it’s the religious leaders. Surely, if we join hands, family planning will never be misconceived again,” said Muhozi.
A representative from the Ministry of Finance, Innocent Gihana, expressed fears that the country may not achieve its development goals unless population growth is checked.
“Rwanda might not achieve its goals for vision 2020, if the rate at which people give birth is not controlled,” said Gihana.
Shagasha sector authorities said the training was timely in countering the negative campaign against contraceptives.
A participant said, “It’s necessary that we join hands to control birth rates.”