I stood on that stage, the stage I had just finished leading praise and worship on. I stood there listening to the words of this "Apostle of God” and listened to his voice echoing at the top of his lungs, and this is roughly what he was saying:
Never take orphans into your homes! Orphans are cursed and when you bring them into your homes, you also take their blood and mix it with yours. This was his announcement to the church. And on stage were me and my siblings. Once he was done “preaching” about why orphans didn’t deserve a chance in families he started to pray. His loud roar of a prayer was for bears to come and kill us. He screamed at the top of his lungs and asked bears to come and kill us. We stood there shaking and scared, he kept on praying.
But there are no bears in Zimbabwe (I think) and that’s not how the world works, so no bears came. But in that moment, standing in front of that audience of 200+ people, I thought for a second that bears would come and kill us because we were orphans and we were cursed. I was scared and crying and could not even look at my siblings for fear of crying even harder. After his sweat and screaming, it became clear that no bears were coming. He then changed his strategy and called upon someone from the congregation to come and pray against the bears.
That man scarred me and tainted my belief in myself. I believed him and every time my world fell apart, it confirmed that he was right, I was cursed. It has taken everything in me to tell you this story because I don’t want “that man” to be hurt, funny isn't it? The scenario was horrible, it makes me cry just thinking about that day. The audience just sat there and did nothing, all 200+ of them. After the church service, tea and biscuits were served and it was never spoken about again.
It sounds ridiculous now that anyone should believe that man and his words. From deep within, I knew that this couldn’t be true, we could not be cursed by virtue of being orphaned, but we believed him anyway. Thankfully for us, after some time, we found the courage to walk away from that place and surrounded ourselves with people that didn’t see us as cursed.
There is LOADS to be unpacked in this story, but I will stop here for now.