NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 10 – Hundreds of worshipers at Nairobi Central Seventh-day Adventists church were on Saturday morning redirected to St George’s High School due to the ongoing leadership wrangles that have persisted for months now.
Anti-riot police officers were seen manning the church premises in a bid to maintain law and order, following last week’s incident when officials exchanged blows, during a church service.
Confused worshipers were left stranded until a quick, albeit, a temporary solution was found-to go and worship at an alternative place.
One of the leaders, Pastor Peter Nyaga who addressed journalists outside the church said they did not expect this turn of events, saying church members should be allowed to worship freely without interference.
“Our constitution is under trial since we have freedom of association and worship. The religious liberty is at test,” he said. “We don’t want to cause any chaos since were are Christians. I am asking my members to go to the alternative place for worship.”
This comes hours after Central Kenya Conference President Pastor John Kiragu Ngunyi expelled 15 members for allegedly fueling divisions.
Efforts to reconcile the warring groups have hit a dead end, but Pastor Nyaga says he is optimistic that what has been termed as an administrative crisis will be amicably addressed, no matter how long it takes.
“Let us keep calm and peace, we believe in God, we are Christians and we do not fight,” the man of cloth said while expressing confidence that the current stalemate will not persist for long.
“These are internal issues that the church has a mechanism of dealing with.”
According to reports, two factions have emerged in the church leadership-with each trying to outshine each other.
The factions emerged after a church election early this year, whose outcome has been disputed by a section of the members.