15 Jul 2004

Methodist Church in Fiji rejects claims ministers take church funds for personal use

3:56 pm on 15 July 2004

The Methodist Church in Fiji has rejected allegations some of its pastors are helping themselves to funds raised at the altar.

It comes after the principal of the Pacific Regional Seminary in Suva, Mikaele Paunga, told fellow church leaders some priests are abusing the goodwill of their parishioners, for their personal benefit.

Mr Paunga says instead the priests should be preaching against social evils.

But the secretary-general of the Methodist Church in Fiji, Reverend Laisiasa Ratabacaca, rejects the allegations.

"Well that is his personal opinion... probably he has come across some concrete evidence, but that is not what is practised in the Methodist Church in Fiji."

Reverend Ratabacaca refused to be drawn on whether there was any concrete evidence.