Part 2: Do Christians Have Voice in Kenya?
“The dog will be buried!” barked out Pastor John escorting the old man out of his office. Pastor John was the senior pastor of Methodist Church in Florida back in 1986. The old man’s dear dog had given up the ghost.
He was so attached to that dog that he went to his pastor and asked if he could conduct a funeral ceremony for the dog. Pastor John was shocked beyond words and trying not to be rude he said “We only conduct funerals for humans, not animals. However there is a new congregation two blocks down the street from here. You go there and ask if they will bless your dog.”
The man thanked Pastor John and said “Do you suppose they would also accept my donation of $1000 (Ksh100,000) for burying my dog?” Pastor John’s face brightened at once and said “Hold it…. Come back. You didn’t tell me the dog was Christian.” Two days later Pastor John conducted a funeral service for the dog explaining how the dog was a faithful Christian until the time of its demiseI.
In 2045, when I will be narrating this story to my grandchildren, the location of this story will have changed from Florida to Kenya. The old man will be a certain government retired corrupt wealthy man living in Karen. Pastor John will be a certain charismatic superstar preacher of Nairobi with a lofty title, maybe ‘prophet-doctor’ since two titles are better than one.
When I am old and withered, which is not too long from now given the haste with which my body parts are falling apart. I will tell my grandchildren about the Church of Kenya.
With the modern advancement in technology and the availability of bundles mwitu, I may opt to narrate the story to them online ‘maybe on twiraa’ or I will blog it. Since I need to save time in future for spitting anyhowly around my village, let me just blog that story and save the link for them.
Since it is in Kenya we make any kind of prayer I pray that God will close your eyes from my poor grammar so that you may read the message that is of greater value. Take a sit and read this.
“Ciana cia Ciana cikwa Children of my children” with a croaky voice “Daniel Muniu Kabui who is the man I am named after was a priest in a Kenyan Church. My uncle describes him as a man who preached so plain that a child could understand. My grandpa preached about God’s wrath and judgement day. He also preached how hell will be so hot that you could feel the heat while listening to his sermon. He also taught people about the importance of prayers.
Grandpa was a humble man preaching around Kiambu county independent churches. He attended church meetings for weeks and ministered on Sundays. He was a small scale farmer with 2 cows, a small tea plantation and grew crops which were only sold when our consumption rate was lower than the produce.
Regular visitors in our home were Men of God who came to seek his advice. I loved this Men of God not because they were ministers of good news but because each time they visited my grandma would buy bread and sugar ‘which was so rare by then’. I would stick around as they were being served and I would gladly partake Chai-Mkate with the servants of God. Am I not blessed, for eating on the same table with anointed men?
MEN OF GOD
My grandfather is a good illustration of the old day’s pastors. They were not rich and had a simple life. They worked to eat and trusted in God fully. The latter-day men of the cloth only preach prosperity gospel. They preach; God is the sole provider while they rob the penniless flock with dubious means like the 310 and some Form 2 Chemistry.
Ironically, they preach; God is the creator yet they pretend to manufacture babies magically with their anointed seeds. They preach about purity and against adultery yet they feast on that choir sister and if we dare point it out they ooze with ‘let he who has not sinned cast the first stone’ and will all keep quiet before they shut us up with their anointing.
They preach about the kingdom of God belonging to the poor yet the work of poor people in those churches is to wash the church, sing loudly, dance and collapse on the floor when the pastor declares “fire!”.
Heads turn when this men of God walk around the streets of Nairobi. The scenario is always a mighty man of God walking among us mere mortals. Sorry, they actually don’t walk, they drive state-of-the art cars with more than four chase cars, full of bodyguards to protect a man who preaches about Jehovah-Roi ‘God our Fortress and protector’.
Why lie, this guys are in their own class. Their clothes are bought brand new from shops abroad since they have no time for iron-resistant mitumba. I have been in church for a long time and I have a thing for fashion and brands so I am at a good position of giving an honest assessment of their outfits.
These preachers have a sense of fashion, their clothes are brand new designer wear, yet they choose uncommon colours like red, green, indigo e.tc. Their shoes are the latest make and their colognes are the loudest in town. If you have ever hugged a prosperity preacher, you must be feeling what am saying.
The Bible to them is a source of fame and fortune never a guidebook. They have a way with their words and they are very poetic. They will definitely give a trained journalist a run for his money until you invite them to the studio and they will kill English and conduct a funeral for it. When they start preaching, especially women are electrified *touched. While thumping the Bible they will proclaim a lot of blessings on your life, cast out demons and send them to journalists and bloggers since we don’t spare them.
Let me also draw daggers at Catholic priests about the polio vaccine. This guys were opposing the ongoing polio vaccine administration yet they do not have biological children and do not stand a chance to experience the challenge of raising a disabled child. Was that logical really?
Speaking about flocks in Kenyan churches you can’t miss to notice that some are literally sheep and they can do anything the pastor says. Due to this somebody needs to move to court soon and demand at the end of each sermon an announcement is made that ‘do what the pastor says at your own risk’. These followers believe in the pastor more than the bible such that the pastor says jump they ask how high. They will jump to the height demanded and sell all their property and give the pastor all the cash.
It is only in Kenya we had an opportunity of hosting the self-proclaimed god -Jehovah Wanyonyi. This funny god had 70 wives and 95 children, that is not even close to the holy trinity yet the ‘Lost Israelites’ who were actually very lost, followed him. Si hiyo ni umbuzi nduguzanguni? Some funny doctrines I see in this country leave me wondering whether to close my eyes and cry or open my mouth and cry.
My dear friends, there are more than 4000 registered churches in this country belonging to a variety of religious denominations. They range from mega churches with more than 1000members to evangelical offshoots with a membership ranging from 5-50 in numbers.
According to 2009 census, 75% of the Kenyan citizens are Christians. That around 31Million Christians. The protestant population was 18million while Catholic population was 9million as other Christian denominations was 4million.
Churches in Kenya are united under one umbrella body known as NCCK (National Council of Churches of Kenya) with the mission of facilitatong unity of the Christian church in Kenya. The current chairperson is Rev. Canon Rosemary Mbogo.
DO WE HAVE A VOICE
No! We don’t have a voice, although the NCCK holds a lot of press-conferences than the government. They like commenting about everything in Kenya yet the government pays no attention to them. This week I was expecting them to comment on the Eurobond Issue but its looks it is so complex for them to comprehend.
In my opinion the Kenyan church has turned into a theatre with lifelong contenders for the absurd Oscar nominations. We hit the headlines with church fights and divisions. We electrocute church doors and gates to keep our church enemies away. We have also made the blood of Jesus a commodity that we sell to the sick, orphans and the poor.
We have forgotten there was only one Jesus and we have allowed charismatic preachers to occupy the space of Jesus in our lives. They have brain washed us and replaced the word of God with their opinions and philosophies. They have blinded us that we can’t even notice when the bible is misinterpreted.
Remember the government watches all this drama and even comes to settle conflicts in our churches. Why then do we assume they can consult or listen to us?
We are so many Christians in this Kenya not to have a voice. Corruption will not end because it all starts from the pastors robbing us.
My friends, it’s high time you internalised this truth: Pastors’ blessings are not a cure to our problems. The cure is linked in our brains. It flows from our faith in Jesus Christ. It’s hinged on our admission that we are sinners and deserve the grace of God. This cure is grounded in our capacity to live in unity as brothers and sisters while loving one another as Christ commands.
Remember Jesus washed our sins away not our brains. If we want to have a voice we need to use brains and make an Impact in our country thus changing the world.
God bless Kenya! #OneNationOnePeople! #Tribe254
what is your take?