“The church was really quite judgmental in the early part of HIV and AIDS,” [the Rev. Pukuta] Mwanza explained. “It was the source of stigma and discrimination because without sufficient information about HIV and AIDS, initially it was perceived as being solely linked to promiscuity, sinful behavior and so on.”
By the late 1980s, though, the church started to change its message and become “a very strong contributor to preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS ”“ caring for the people who had AIDS and for orphans,” Mwanza said. “In fact, some of the best practices that have been used in this country are those that the church has been able to adopt, such as home-based care system.
“The church,” he added, “…(is) now much more caring, more loving.”