Home | News    Wednesday 5 January 2011

W. Equatoria Governor suspends Jehovah’s Witnesses churches for refusing to register for referendum


January 4, 2011 (RII-YUBU, WESTERN EQUATORIA) - The Governor of Western Equatoria state Bangasi Joseph Bakosoro has described on December 27 2010, Jehovah Witnesses, who did not register to vote in Southern Sudan’s independence referendum as “traitors”.

The governor, who has been campaigning and spreading awareness of the January 9 referendum around Western Equatoria, said that “Jehovah Witnesses are traitors for Freedom of Southern Sudan” when visiting Ri-Yubu Payam, Tambura County..

“During the Voters registration for the Southern Sudan’s Referendum, the JWs (Jehovah Witnesses) in Western Equatoria State have refused to register,” he revealed.

Bakosoro also said, that “the JWs had attempted to persuade other citizens not to take part in the voter registration exercise that concluded on December 15.

However, the religious group vehemently deny that they tried to influence others citizens, saying that they only wanted to follow their religious beliefs “not to participate in any political issues of government.”

The same scenario occurred during Sudan’s general elections in April.

“As a government, with its own constitution, and law, the Jehovah Witness churches in the state will remain suspended until consultations are made across South Sudan and the rest of the world” Bakosoro announced.

“We shall consult in America to find out which Bible are JWs are using or do they have different government?” asked Bakosoro.

Bakosoro called upon county commissioners to ensure that the churches remained suspended “until accurate results are got, and decisions will be taken.”

Bakosoro lamented that “the referendum is not about an individual, but as a golden slate which was guaranteed by the two million lives lost in the struggle of this nation, this will determine the future of our grand children.”

In the 1983-2005 north-south civil war two million people died and four million displaced according to the UN. Africa’s longest running civil war ended with a peace agreement that gave the south the right to determine whether they separate from the north in a referendum.

On Tuesday 28 December, the Deputy Governor of Western Equatoria, Sapana A.Abuyi received a delegation of Jehovah’s Witnesses from Juba headed by Phillip Paulino.

Speaking to the deputy governor, Paulino stated that “it is against their religion to register or mix with politics.”

He asked the deputy governor of the state government to permit the religious minority to “resume their religious activities without precondition.”

In response, the deputy governor said, “the state government is not against any church, but it is because the Jehovah Witness followers continue to preach wrong messages to the local communities of the state with regards to the forthcoming southern Sudan historic votes.”

The deputy governor, who is also the chairperson of the state referendum task force, disclosed that, “the Comprehensive Peace Agreement has made it clear for the Southerners to determine their fate through ballot papers on the 9th of Jan 2011.”

Furthermore the governor encouraged the citizens to take the referendum seriously as part of life, calling it as the “final walk to freedom, democracy and prosperity for the people of southern Sudan.”

Governor Bakosoro asked the people of Ri- Yubu and the rest of the state to focus on improved food production to end dependency on food aid.

The Catholic Bishop of Tambura and Yambio Diocese, Edwardo Hiboro Kusala told a congregation in Rii-Yubu said that it was an achievement of the current SPLM led government that they had managed to convince most sons and daughters of the state “to defect back to SPLM.”

Many politicians from other political and military groups have rejoined the SPLM in the build up to the referendum including: retired Major General Alison Moanane Magaya from the Khartoum-based National Congress Party (NCP), John Masuwa, Paulino Zizi, Charles Kisanga formerly of the SPLM breakaway group SPLM–Democratic Change and many more. Another senior NCP figure Angelo Beda also recently declared that he has left Sudan’s governing party.

The Bishop called upon citizens “to join hands to support the current government for the development and effective service delivery to the people of the state.”


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  • 5 January 2011 07:23, by omoni Atari

    Jehovah Witnesses have to understand that ,this is not about the religious beliefs.It is all about freedom of life in southern sudan. The church is training radical christians extremism,which against the will of our people.

    The governor did a good job for suspending them for further investigation,These people interprete the Bible into their own understanding ,they skip some chapters and give people wrong information about God.

    • 5 January 2011 08:37, by Solomon Ruffo

      The Watchtower Jehovah Witness is not a religion, it is a mind-control cult. They micromanage every possible aspect of member’s lives - from what they say, think, dress, and even what they can and cannot do in the privacy of their bedrooms.
      They DO DIVIDE and break up families!
      They are a destructive cult of apostate dogmas.

    • 5 January 2011 09:34, by mayom maboung marek

      I like Governor Joseph leadership, he supervised his flocks in the remote areas and talked to them face to face.

      The sect now known as the Jehovah’s Witnesses was started by Charles Taze Russell, who was born in 1852 and worked in Pittsburgh as a haberdasher. He was raised a Congregationalist, but at the age of seventeen he tried to convert an atheist to Christianity and ended up being converted instead—not to outright atheism, but to agnosticism. Some years later he went to an Adventist meeting, was told that Jesus would be back at any time, and got interested in the Bible.

      Fifty years ago the Jehovah’s Witnesses numbered fewer than 100,000. Now there are several million of them around the world. They don’t have churches; they have "Kingdom Halls" instead. Their congregations are uniformly small, usually numbering less than two hundred. Most Witnesses used to be Catholics or Protestants. Let’s look a little at their history, How They Make Converts

      Most religions welcome converts, and the Witnesses’ very reason for existence is to make them. To accomplish this they follow several steps.

      First they try to get a copy of one of their magazines into the hands of a prospective convert. They lead off with a question designed to tap into universal concerns such as, "How would you like to live in a world without sickness, war, poverty, or any other problem?" If the prospect is willing to speak with them, they arrange what’s known as a "back call"—that is, they return in a week or so for more discussions. This can be kept up indefinitely.

      At some point the missionaries invite the prospect to a Bible study. This is not the usual sort of Bible study, where passages are examined in light of context, original word meaning, relevance to other verses in Scripture, etc. Instead, this "Bible study" is really an exposition of Witness doctrine by means of Watchtower literature. Simple questions are presented in the literature which are derived directly from the text. The answers, therefore, are readily discernible, making the prospective convert feel spiritually astute, since he or she can answer all the questions "correctly." The Bible study is directed along lines mandated by the officials in Brooklyn, and the prospect is there to learn, not to teach. If he progresses well, he’s invited to a larger Bible study, which may be held at a Kingdom Hall.

      About this time he’s invited to attend a Sunday service. At the Kingdom Hall, which resembles not so much a church but a small lecture hall, the prospect hears a Witness discuss a few verses of Scripture and how those verses can be explained to non-Witnesses or how to "refute" standard Christian doctrines such as the Trinity, hell, the immortality of the soul, etc. The service includes taped music to accompany the singing of hymns, and there is always time allotted for obtaining Watchtower literature and publications

      mayom mabuong marek

      • 5 January 2011 09:37, by Solomon Ruffo

        There are numerous Watchtower Jehovah’s Witnesses publications that are too scary for children.I was given the Watchtower "paradise" book that showed birds eating the decayed corpses of billions slaughtered by Jehovah at Armageddon.It gave me nightmares!

        The Watchtower has been a source of hate Literature for over 100 years.
        Watchtower and other Jehovah’s Witness publications have been full of slanderous, half-truth, deceiving, misleading hate-filled articles and lies.

        The Jehovah’s Witnesses on one hand fill their books and lectures with details about how evil and corrupt every other religion is, but then when theirs is exposed as corrupt they fall back on how it’s *voluntary* to be a member, and how its not nice to say nasty things about them, and how they are being *persecuted*.

        Jehovah’s Witnesses are a religious group that separates families - in Scientology it’s called disconnection, in JW it’s disfellowshipping and shunning.

  • 5 January 2011 07:27, by Monye Jur

    Registering and voting in the upcoming referendum has nothing to do with politics or religion but its about individual freedom, dignity, prosperity, equality, justice, destiny, etc...

    I do believe that south Sudan constitution allows freedom of faith expressions, but it does not allow those faiths which are preaching against individual freedoms such as registering and voting in issues like referendum.

    Our government must be clear and sensitive to such faiths, otherwise they south be stop permanently not to operate in south Sudan since they are ignoring and not recognizing the bloodshed of the struggle for their own freedom which they are now enjoying in preaching the message of JWs.

    • 5 January 2011 07:37, by Lokorai

      Mr. Governor,

      Tala diinum! These people don’t know the injil or even Jehovah they claim to profess

      I was surprised to find out how come that the bedrock of the SPLM and spreadheaders of people liberation (WES) could register less than 300,000 with that population of close over 2 m


      • 5 January 2011 09:34, by Solomon Ruffo

        Jehovah people would not participate in any national event or cultural ceremonies claiming its against their religion. Yet the same people constantly knock on people door telling them to listen to their message and join their religion and they always beg for money donations

  • 5 January 2011 07:28, by Deng E. Manyuon

    God forbids us from Christian fundamentalists. We already had enough with Islamic fundamentalists in Khartoum!


  • 5 January 2011 07:48, by Aleu

    Dear governor of Western Equatoria State, Joseph Bakosoro.

    I think you are absolutely 100% right if these people are telling others not to vote in this important time for all Southern Sudanese then, this is the violation of the law and the citizens rights. Basically, you need to do something before the voting will take place in Western Equatoria, I think this is why your State voting population is too lowest than any others 9 States in Southern Sudan according to the report.

    Here are the things maybe you need to do now. Find those people who disoriented your State citizens just by name and the county and try your best to know exactly what kind of that religion is. Seem to me that, there are some religious being bribes to speak against separation in Southern Sudan.

    Tell them frankly speaking if there is anyone among those who does that then, he or she will be the subject to the law in Southern Sudan, because this is the first time ever for Southern Sudanese to have this kind of wonderful chance that, does not need any religious to mess up with nonesense Ideas. The religion in Northern Sudan has been up to date with her government and that is why the religious in Southern Sudan side have been suffering with their people what is wrong by a part of morally as a religious supporters.

    • 5 January 2011 16:53, by Tecolote

      So, let’s see if I have this right. Some 2 million people in Sudan died because of religious hatred between Muslims and Christians.

      Now, Christians want to show hatred toward other Christians? Is that about correct?

      You people did not learn anything from the wars.

      Jehovah’s Witnesses do not fight. If everyone were Jehovah’s Witnesses there would have been no war.

  • 5 January 2011 09:04, by Peter Elia Kuzee

    Well done governor,you have done good work and we wants more.Those jehova’s Witnesses are trouble some, they wants to spoil separation.Just after freedom,they will see the result. JEHOVA’S WITNESSES SHOULD REMEMBER WHAT PRESIDENT MOBUTU SESE SEKO OF CONGO DID TO THEM. HELL FOR THEM.

  • 5 January 2011 09:41, by J G kuol

    >Watchtower psycho-witnesses is just another cult like
    scientology ,they’re all run by hollywood celebrities.
    > And no doubt that the hollywood is the most disfunctioning
    community in America.
    > Watchtower folks:they should not be there in the first place,the Governor should send them to Tijani Mahhi where they belong.By the way TM is a mental-health institution.

  • 5 January 2011 09:42, by Rev John Khamis Kamunde

    Your exellency the govenor of W.E.S;
    Congratulation to you for the step you have taken against this people who claim to be christians.

    Please my advise for you is to invite us all the church leaders,and the theologians of Western Equatoria so that we could realy sit with this people to know what Bible they are preaching???.

    Secondly I dought even the name they are using JEHOVA’WITNESS:
    How can God Almighty need a human being to witness for HIM???
    God is a trinity father who is a devine being,supernatural and Omni Presence through Holy-Spirit:He dosen’t needs human being whom he created to witness for him.

    Dear Governor,please arrange a forum for us,let our two bishops invite us to meet this people so that we could realy know the hidden agenda of this movement!!!
    This is because they have shown us that they are realy not part of us.

    I wonder if they are God’ witness as they claimed,they would have known the political history of Sudan.
    All the believers do pray that let God save us from the opretion,intimidation,and give us our rights,equality,as South-Sudanese.
    We do pray for the milions of our dear one we lost,the orphans,widows,old,sick and etc,etc.

    Let all of us gives our voice together and back-up the order from our governor so that it will not be him alone,but all of us in Southern Sudan @ large,and Western Equatoria in particular thanks.

    Rev John Khamis Kamunde,
    ECS,Yambio diocesan representative in Juba.

    • 5 January 2011 11:21, by Peter Mading

      Oh dear Oh dear;
      You did not know that Churches are the sources of politics? I am sure they did. First of all, what is the meaning of having all these churches on earth. Is it not power and greed? The main world-wide Church recognised for its stability and doctrine for Christianity is Catholic Church. It is the mother of all these Independant Churches.

      The Independant churches want power and freedom and nothing else. The word "freedom" is the root cause. Let it be the end. Mr. Governor; you have done wonderful jobs however do not point your finger to these Witnesses of the Old Testament- They are still following Jewish traditions.

  • 5 January 2011 14:19, by Paul Ongee

    Dear Folks,

    Jehovah’s Witnesses are not true Christians. They are, as portrayed in every comment above (I don’t expect to be the last person making comment on their activity), interpreting Bible in their own terms. They love freedom of knocking on every door early morning 24/7 with expectation that a new convert must join them in their endeavor. They are the enemy of peace and freedom of others.

    Of course, they never participate in any political activity but need money from whoever offers them. They never celebrate Christmas, saying that Jesus was born around October (on what date? Nobody knows.), but call Jesus’s name during service 24/7. They never celebrate birthdays but enjoy dancing (not limited to the nigger-wild style) at organized party and clubs. If you really wanna see fashion show on Sunday, go to their "Kingdom Hall." They are stereotypical.

    If some of you have access to a movie called "Friday" not "The Next Friday" featuring Ice Cube, you will certainly notice frustration over the faces of the two ladies holding Bibles in their hands who went early in the morning knocking on the door, trying to wake Ice Cube up to listen to the word of God. Ice Cube hardly woke up and opened the door half-way to see who are knocking on the door. Upon seeing him the two ladies asked without saying Good morning first "Do you know that Jesus loves you?"

    Ice didn’t expect anybody to tell him early that morning whether Jesus loves him or not. Without wasting time, he shut the door over their faces. Can you imagine what they said? "F..k you." And this is the kind of Christan organization that wants people to follow what they’re doing. It’s not just a movie but based on true story about the true color of Jehovah’s Witnesses.

    Paul Ongee
    Khartoum, Sudan

  • 5 January 2011 15:32, by ChrisL

    You must judge a people by their words and actions, not by what others say about them. To all who claim to be Christians on this list, get out your Bibles and see for yourself what Jesus said about his disciples at John 15:17-19. Who of all these religious groups truly fits this description? Only Jehovah’s Witnesses! They will not hate, they will not make war, they will not oppress. They show true Christian love for all and will never take sides in worldy politics.

    [John 6:14-15] Then those men, when they had seen the sign that Jesus did, said, "This is truly the Prophet who is to come into the world." Therefore when Jesus perceived that they were about to come and take Him by force to make Him king, He departed again to the mountain by Himself alone.

    [Luke 4:5-8] Then the devil, taking Him up on a high mountain, showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said to Him, "All this authority I will give You, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish. Therefore, if You will worship before me, all will be Yours." And Jesus answered and said to him, "Get behind Me, Satan! For it is written, "You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve."’

    Jesus himself refused to get involved in politics and his disciples followed his example, did they not? Are you Jesus’ disciple if you join a political cause? What about taking up weapons for one side or the other? The Bible says:

    [Isaiah 2:4] He shall judge between the nations, And rebuke many people; They shall beat their swords into plowshares, And their spears into pruning hooks; Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, Neither shall they learn war anymore.

    [2 Corinthians 10:3-4] For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds,

    [Matthew 26:52] But Jesus said to him, "Put your sword in its place, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword.

    [Luke 6:27] "But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,

    If your church has taken sides in worldy politics and war, then they have abandoned the Leader and King, Christ Jesus. Your Bible says it is true! And to hide their hypocrisy they slander any who expose them, and they throw mud at those who refuse to join them. But Jehovah’s Witnesses will never abandon Christ, come what may. So, who are the real Christians?

    FYI, these scriptures come from the New King James Bible.

  • 5 January 2011 16:49, by Peter Elia Kuzee

    MR chris L,
    I dont know what you mean? jehohas witnesses are dangerous snakes on this world.
    My state will not be under such religion abusing our elected leaders.Let them have new haven in hell.

  • 5 January 2011 18:08, by new yorker

    International human right laws support anyone or group that wants to be politically neutral. the victims of the islamic north are now victimizing a minority christian group that has contributed more to human rights in the world that any other group.
    it is funny that the southerners would prefer those that will register and vote against their freedom over those that want to stay politically neutral. And other christian faiths responsible for genocide in neighboring rwanda are your model christians.
    the world is fighting for the freedom of sudan in the south but the people of southern sudan are begining to persecute a non-violent monority group that differ in their beliefs, so what is democracy in sudan anyway?

  • 5 January 2011 21:31, by Vinny

    The WT Society and Jehovah’s Witnesses are a MAN-originating, men-run, high controlling religious cult-like institution, rather than what they tell people they are (God’s appointed Channel/Organization/People nonsense).

    The facts prove without a doubt that God was never behind any of this:



    We got False End of the World Predictions all over the place, medical disasterous policies - FORCED on JW’s at risk of extreme shunning.

    We got flip flops, blinking lights, wacky science, historical failures, arrogance, judging other religions and people of those religions and LOADS of WT Society embarrassments and humiliations throughout their entire 100+ year history!

    God had nothing to do with all that nonsense that was called, "Food from God" by all JW’s even down to this day.

    It was WRONG when it first came off the presses!

    So why are some today opposed to Jehovah’s Witness and their policies?

    DEAD PEOPLE is why.

    RUINED LIVES is why.


    An arrogant, controlling Religious Institution is why.

    They are WRONG ON BLOOD TODAY (for 68 years now).

    They are WRONG ON SHUNNING those that simply walk away from the JW religion today. (nowhere in bible)

    They are WRONG 607 BCE and 1914.

    They were WRONG ABOUT FORBIDDING Vaccinations, Organ Transplants, Alternative Service and much more.

    They were wrong on ALL OF THEIR End of World Predictions in writing. Wrong on marital infidelity rules, rape rules, beards, 1935, Beth Sarim and too many things to bother listing here.

    Did ((( GOD ))) make all of these terrible decisions to force on all the JW’s as "food at the proper time", and then change his mind later on?

    Or was is just a bunch of MEN, that make up the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses (sitting up in some Brooklyn office somewhere) making these poor decisions, FORCING them on all JW’s and then afterwards conveniently change their mind?

    Does God serve Bad Food like this?

    Perhaps He is not a very good cook?

    Shunning people for disagreements is NOT scriptural!

    Shunning people for walking away from the JW faith is NOT scriptural!

    This is a CONTROL mechanism. And it often works. It is a gross misapplication of scripture to keep the average JW towing the line.


    Jw’s are not allowed to even THINK differently.

    I WAS a JW, and an elder as well, until recently in 2006 when I walked away. I am very familiar with how they are actually WORSE than most other faiths today. I am shunned for walking away. People today and for the last 80 years have died, without reason, due to the WT medical policies forced on all JW’s.

    Each week is filled with a list of JW obligations that basically OWN YOU. You are told what you can read, what movies are acceptable, what association is acceptable, what facial hair is okay. What you can celebrate and cannot. What words you are allowed to use.

    What is allowed in your own bedroom with your wife. And too many other things to list here again. Before knowing all the facts and believing they were God’s True Channel, one can go a very long way to justify all of these things. Take away that one true faith belief and so falls the rest.

    I have been there and done all that.

    JW’s are told they cannot take blood transfusions in situations where they might need one (such as through accidents or complications with surgery, pregnancy or child birth).

    So, naturally, more JW’s will die.

    Just like this mother died unnecessarily!


    And now her husband has no wife and her two new twins have no mother.

    And all for what?

    Or this teenager that also DIED: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/west_midlands/8690785.stm

    This is very simple. JW’s NEEDLESSLY die for this sorry blood policy today.

    From the same organization that has an entire 100 + year history of similar bad and embarrasing policies.

    This is why I suggest to anybody thinking of becoming a JW ... to READ READ AND READ UP ON THIS RELIGION FIRST!

    The proof will clearly stand out that the JW faith is not what they try to tell people they are!

    The facts are Irrefutable.


  • 5 January 2011 21:32, by Vinny

    As a 15 year Zealous Person for Jehovah (and elder) here is my story.


    • 6 January 2011 01:16, by new yorker

      they are just like the innocent children in sudan who won’t vote, they won’t cause any harm neither. in a true democracy there are 3 choices, for, against and neutral. all three choices should be respected, persecuting a group that has a different opinion from yours is what hitler,stalin,pol pot,sadam hussein, osama bin ladin are known for, sudanese would be wise to respect the opinions of others, just as the president of sudan is agreeing to do with them in the south regarding the secession vote.

      Jehovah’s Witnesses will take these persecutions honorably and with joy as it is only a fulfillment of the bible prophesies. james 1:2 , matthew 5:11 ,
      john 15: 18-25 (Jesus’ words to his followers)"if the world hates you, you know that it hated me before it hated you.if you were part of the world, the world would be fond of what is its own. now because you are no part of the world......

      • 6 January 2011 06:00, by Deng E. Manyuon

        New yorker
        Yes in a true democracy there are 3 choices when it comes to voting. And they are for, against and abstain votes. Yes these 3 choices should be respected. But they are respected when are exercised through polling station and legal process. This Jehovah’s Witnesses group did not register in first place. That is of course, fine with them. But ... but... to urge non-Jehovas in order not to register and vote for this historic excercise. Well that is anti-social element behaviour. Leave Christianity alone please. The issue here is how do we interpret the verses in the Bible.

        Mr Christ L. was commenting that Jesus was not in worldly politics and state affairs. That was secularism in Jesus side. Jesus put it clear to all Christians that " Give to cesar what belongs to Cesar, and to God what belongs to his Kingdom". You give whatever to be given to the state separately from whatever to be given to Almighty God. As Christians and citizens of the state, we got basic human rights from the state as well as obligations/duties towards the very state.


        • 6 January 2011 07:58, by new yorker

          they denied that accusation, Jehovah’s Witnesses stay away from politics, the governor hasn’t shown any evidence of his accusation yet, but they are already being punished without a fair trial. i want the people of Sudan to conduct a thorough investigation, and i can guarantee that the investigation will prove their innocence.all these accusations are being fueled by other church leaders that want to ban the activities of Jehovah’s Witnesses. i understand the concerns of the people of southern Sudan,i appeal to the people of Sudan to follow the course of justice, conduct a fair investigation and trial before jumping to conclusions.
          remember that these other denominations were involved in the genocide in rwanda. catholics,methodists,baptists,pentecostals and many more that bear arms have killed their own brothers of the same denomination all over africa because of ethnic and political differences. Jehovah’s Witnesses do not fight wars, do not engage in politics, all they do is preach about the kingdom of God promised in the bible and encourage their neighbors to read study the bible.

          • 6 January 2011 10:21, by Deng E. Manyuon

            Dear new yorker
            The Sudan high delegation of Jehova’s Witness based in Juba have arrived in Westernt Equqtoria to meet with government officials. Hopefully, they will be able to clear out misunderstanding. My personal opinion is that I don’t support the interference of the religion in state affairs and vice versa. State is for everyone regardless of his/her religion affilliation. Religion or any belief is between individual and the Creator. State is to protect and respect individual’s belief. The same, the individuals should respect the state by fulfilling state duties.


  • 6 January 2011 01:18, by kaci-banno

    Well done Mr. Governor, any religious group which hinder the people of south Sudan not to vote for self determination must be closed down because they are against our future. Even the Bible tell us that God is God of justice and encourage people to liberate themselves from any injustice situation . anyway I know Jehovah’s witness is always a religion of confusion.


  • 6 January 2011 01:39, by Oduck Bol

    It mean to them that 2000,000 southerns who died is okay and the remainers of them must live under sharia law.

    I don’t know why southerns are sheep to be sheated like that. You do not need to follow other person’s faith. If you do not have God,creat one for yourself or let your father or mather be your God instead of following sons of other men.

    They are all man mad gods. They do that so that they can pass their own aganda through it.

    "If there is really heaven," belive me they will never tell you about that.

  • 6 January 2011 05:03, by kuol M. Deng

    If Jehovah Witness converts other citizens of South Sudan unforcefully, why does it matter to the government or other religious groups? It is good to use your speech as influential tool when preaching or teaching the word of God. We need to be open minded!

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