Infidelity of clergy has been defined as a culture, by those who believe in
polygamous marriage. Women are often controlled by men and very few
societies exhibit an equalitarian relationship. One paramount way in which men
control women is through sex and sexual power. Infidelity is abuse because the
characteristics of the unfaithful are like those of a battered and the symptoms of
the victim are like those of the battered. Sitting in on battered women’s group, I
heard the same things-women wanting to go back; full of anger and rage, saying
they’d rather be beaten than wonder where their partner was sleeping at night.
The researcher is ministering among Pondo and Bhaca people who are no
strangers to this oppressing practice. Few marriages in these days last beyond
few years, because infidelity has become such an accepted alternative way of
living and working out marital problems. The problem disturbed author’s
ministry as a junior minister. As result I am researching this problem so as to
come out with a theory that will help to address this issue.
Clergy spouses approach the act of infidelity very painful, they ended up
traumatizing their own spouses, children and their ministry. One of my
favourite clergy in Pondo even resigned his pastorate about a year ago due to
adultery and fathering a child outside of his marriage. All of these high profile
ministers have been involved in some form of infidelity. But still the powerful
words from Paul in 1 Corinthians 10:13 “no temptation has overtaken you
except such as is common to man, but God is faithful, who will not allow you
to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make
the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it”. Today, many churches invite unfaithful itinerant clergies to preach to their
congregations unaware of the spiritual poison they are injecting directly into the
life blood of their congregations and the Christian community. No wonder many
churches are so full of infidelity, dishonesty and immorality of the worst kind.
Clergy spouses decided to stay in their marriage are taught forgiveness, so that
they can move away from their traumatic experience.
Dissertation (MA Theol)--University of Pretoria, 2014.