Church should take lead in Kenya's redemption
SEE ALSO :Wrangles giving our churches a bad nameFew leaders get elected based on probity. Fewer still because of a good development track record. And it seems regard for numbers has permeated the church, where pastors boast of congregational strength; where one earns respect from the size of the offertory collected on Sundays and not from the lives that are transformed as a result of right living. The second principle sets out the definition of church. According to 1 Timothy 3:15, it is “the pillar and ground of the truth.” The truth is what defined the churches of Bishops Alexander Muge, Henry Okullu, Nding’i Mwana a’ Nzeki, David Gitari and the Reverend Timothy Njoya. They spoke truth to power in the 1980s and 1990s.
SEE ALSO :Con group returns to Central KenyaIt is a warning against those who seek to buy fame through contributions that must be noisily proclaimed. For a country that is 70 per cent Christian, it is also an indictment on the congregants who do not follow in the practice of tithing. For the giving of a tenth of once monthly income should suffice to fund most church activities. Shortfalls for special programmes should be raised through internal fundraising without recourse to the ubiquitous politician-driven harambees that dot the church landscape. Fourth, not every gift to the church is acceptable. The biblical account of Judas Iscariot who betrayed Jesus Christ for 30 pieces of silver is instructive. Though he tried to give back the money to the priests in the temple, they would not accept it, calling it blood money, a template of how the church ought to behave emerges. Receiving donations from people of dubious ethical distinction casts aspersions on the integrity of church leaders themselves and accords them the same standard of venality associated with dishonest types. One would have expected the troika of pastors to engage in apologetics, the religious discipline of defending religious doctrine through systematic argumentation and discourse. They did not. Whereas the arguments of their Nigerian counterpart found salience in the Bible, the Kenyan ones came across as conceited, sanctimonious and grounded on nothing more than emotion. Without a sound biblical foundation, church leaders risk a disconnect between what they proclaim and what they portray. They risk losing moral high ground and may fail to find resonance with young people looking for answers beyond dysphoria caused by the political class. The church should lead the way. Let its leaders take responsibility. Let them proclaim with all honesty, Mea culpa! Perhaps then will true redemption come to Kenya. Mr Khafafa is Vice Chairman, Kenya-Turkey Business Council
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