In Christianity, good health not only refers to the absence of disease but encompasses a state of mental, emotional, financial and spiritual fitness and wellness. In the Zimbabwean society, Christianity has made immense contributions towards ensuring good health and well-being. These include but are not confined to; performance of miracles, setting up of hospitals and clinics, providing sacred practitioners who offer counselling as well as urging congregants to work hard. On the contrary, their are Christianity has also constrained good health and well-being as some denominations demote congregants from seeking medical treatment as well as some sacred practitioners aggravate circumstance (ill health). The thrust of this paper is to discuss how Christianity contributes towards good health.
Christianity has significantly contributed in the promotion of good health and well-being as it is marred with performance miracles. This is because miracles which are extraordinary happenings serve as a panacea to ill health as one gets healed from an afflictions. For example, Prophetic, Healing and Deliverance Ministries founder, Walter Magaya and United Family International Church’s Emmanuel Makandiwa are on record for having diagnosed and healed diseases like cancer and hypertension. However, the validity of these miracles has left opinions divided with some circles labelling them as “staged-managed.” These claims are yet to be ascertained since the prophets and purportedly healed individuals testify of the truthfulness. Therefore, Christianity greatly contributes towards good health and well-being in the Zimbabwean society by performance of miracles.
Christianity has also set up hospitals and clinics in Zimbabwe thereby promoting good health and well-being. This is because several Christian denominations such as the Methodist Church as well as Presbeteryan Church set up the Horward Mission Hospital and the Chinhoyi Presbeteryan Clinic respectively. These offer medical treatment to Zimbabweans. On the contrary, these institutions have been criticized for failing to provide access to healthcare to all people, from all walks of life in spite of financial muscles. Their argument is that they need funding to run smoothly. Hence, Christianity hasp contributed to good health and well-being by setting up medical facilities in Zimbabwe.
Christian denominations in Zimbabwe have also contributed to good health and well-being by having sacred practitioners who act as counsellors. This is because one of the causes of ill health is mental stress which requires counselling. Christianity has such practitioners, for example pastors, prophets and priests who provide guidance and counselling. However, these practitioners have been singled out to be sources of stress, emotional fragmentation and pyschological torture since some prophets like Prophet Walter Magaya have been implicated in rape cases involving several women who allegedly sought assistance from the same. This can however, not be used to disqualify all Christian practitioners as sources of advise and guidance. Thus, Christianity has promoted good health and well-being by profering sacred practitioners who act as counsellors.
Another contribution made by Christianity towards good health and well-being in Zimbabwe is teaching followers hard work. This is because one of the causes of ill health is abject poverty and churches urge their congregants to partake in various enterprises and extraordinary hardwork. However, with the advent of the prosperity gospel, Zimbabweans have been milked of their monies as an assurance of so-called miracle money. This has unmistakably furthered illness among believers such as the United Family International Church as led by Emmanuel Makandiwa. Hence, Christianity has contributed through its teachings of hardwork to good health and well-being.
Christianity has also endorsed medical aid thus promoting good health and well-being in the Zimbabwean society. This is because, in the wake of the then deadly HIV and AIDS, Christian denominations such as the Roman Catholic Church embrassed and encouraged use of Anti-retrovirals (ARVs) which weaken the horrendous effects of the disease. However, some Christian sects especially African Independent Churches shun medicines and their help to the human body. These sects have even gone further to prohibit and indoctrinate the usage of dosage on infants and adults for instance, the COVID-19 vaccines. This has posed danger to the health of the congregants of the religion in question. Therefore, by endorsing medical aid, Christianity has immensely contributed to good health and well-being.
In a nutshell, this paper has discussed the contributions of Christianity towards good health and well-being. On one hand Christianity promotes good health and well being by teaching on hardwork, embracing medication, setting up of hospitals and clinics, offering counselling personnel as well as performing miracles while on the other hand, Christianity’s contributions are limited by some denominations shunning medication, promoting laziness through so-called miracle money claims as well as pegging exhorbitant prices for healthcare. One can conclude that Christianity has greatly contributed in promoting good health and well-being in the Zimbabwean society.