Social issues rise

A FAITH-BASED non-governmental organisation has initiated Ecumenical Deliberative Forum to address the rise in social issues in the country.

Ecumenical Centre for Research, Education and Advocacy (ECREA) national co-ordinator Kositatino Tikomaibolatagane said issues such as rape, teenage pregnancies, suicide and homelessness needed to be addressed.

“We come to understand that social ills of society is more a spiritual one than physical because in physical, we are getting better.

“This can be addressed by spiritual perspectives because the Government is addressing the physical needs of the people,” he said.

Church leaders, youths and members of NGOs representing different denominations in Fiji were part of the forum, which aimed at developing a framework to address the problems.

“We convene this forum because we believe that the church and the vanua have a proper ground of this approach in trying to have people focus more on moral and ethics,” said Mr Tikomaibolatagane.

He emphasised that the hope now was for churches to play a prophetic role in being a voice in society, but first of all they must align themselves to the head of the church, which is Christ.

“We have shifted from valuing the people and wellness of the community and the goodness in society to the value of materials in terms of wealth and money.

“This shift makes people think more individualistic because they are only looking at themselves, but not the other.”

Mr Tikomaibolatagane said the outcome of the forum created awareness especially for the village Christian leaders and Christian churches.

He said in order to have a better nation, there was a need for collaboration of all people, all cultures and all religions to address the rising issues in society.

More Stories