Review Article

‘Robert’s Rules of Order’ on religious conflicts in the Church of Christ in Zimbabwe

Gift Masengwe, Bekithemba Dube
Verbum et Ecclesia | Vol 44, No 1 | a2666 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v44i1.2666 | © 2023 Gift Masengwe, Bekithemba Dube | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 03 August 2022 | Published: 22 March 2023

About the author(s)

Gift Masengwe, Department of Curriculum Studies, Faculty of Education, University of the Free State, Qwaqwa, South Africa
Bekithemba Dube, Department of Curriculum Studies and Higher Education, Faculty of Education, University of the Free State, Qwaqwa, South Africa

Abstract

Church conflicts arise due to poor ethics, hermeneutics or doctrine. Unending conflicts may be historical and conflict resolution may not have been done. This article identifies fissures in the history of conflict in the Church of Christ in Zimbabwe (COCZ). It proposes to use ‘Robert’s Rules of Order’ (RONR) to redirect deliberants’ energies towards comprehensive solutions (Robert 2020). This can eradicate collegial competition, litigious animosity, divided loyalties, mutual hatred, and violent tendencies in negative energy to increase growth tendencies in the organisation. Trust was lost due to highly adversarial contact where legal battles and acrimonious criticisms have not been addressed. The COCZ has tactical, technical and strategic management principles inherited from the restoration history, which can apply in conflict resolution. Using scientific methods of handling conflicts like RONR, and the COCZ principles can hopefully lead to better results in that church.

Contribution: The paper contributes to alternatives to conflict resolutions which have been tested within the Church of Christ. The Robert’s Rules can be used in different religious organisations to resolve conflict through peaceful resolutions of difference.


Keywords

history of conflicts; social causes of conflict; Somabhula-Devure splits; Somabhula conference centre; Robert’s Rules of Order’; Church of Christ in Zimbabwe; constitution.

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