The Catholic Bishops in Zambia have expressed their sadness and pain over the departure of Archbishop Milingo from the church. In an official statement they said: "For a long time we have tried to reach out to Archbishop Milingo, who has unfortunately rejected our regular and honest advice. Other people in the Church, including the Holy Father, have tried to reach out to him, but he took this advice as a form of persecution." They said: "We feel deep sympathy for the many people who put their trust in the former Archbishop and now feel betrayed and abandoned by his action. "A challenge for them now is to make a right choice by committing themselves to follow Jesus Christ, who has the words of eternal life, rather than anyone else. "The action by the former archbishop is a reminder to us of our own fragility in faith. It should therefore make us humble. Left to ourselves, without deep faith in Christ, we remain fragile and open to sin. "However, the defection of any one of us does not change the Church of Jesus Christ, as it continues to bring His teaching and sacraments to the world." Finally, the bishops said: "we invite all Christians to continue praying for the former Archbishop, in the hope that he will decide to repent and come back to the Church".
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