THE United Church of Zambia (UCZ) has called for preservation of strong family values for the church and the country at large to remain united and free from serious ills such as defilement and murder.
UCZ Synod Bishop Mutale Mulumbwa regretted that the family unit had collapsed and that some Christians preferred to be associated with the elite in society and within Church circles at the expense of their close relatives.
Bishop Mulumbwa was speaking during a sermon on the theme 'Taking Care of Our Family Members' at Northrise congregation in Ndola yesterday.
He said Christians should be exemplary and caring in their everyday lives as was case with Joseph who was the 11th of Jacob's 12 sons.
Bishop Mulumbwa said Joseph's name in Egypt and other places was prominent because he was caring and did not hold a grudge against his brothers who had sold him into slavery in Egypt where he later rose to become the second most powerful man, next to King Pharaoh.
He said Joseph went back to his family and embraced his brothers who were initially jealous of him.
Quoting from the Bible in Genesis 47: 1-12, Bishop Mulumbwa said all Christians should identify themselves with their families because people rise from within the family to become what they are.
"There is a trend in the Church where some people do not want to be associated with their families because the families are poor or members do not get married.
"They have adopted brothers and sisters in the Church. Yes, you can have brothers and sisters in Christ, but you must not forget your real relatives," he said.