Planned ‘goat cleansing’ raises friction in church - Daily Nation

Planned ‘goat cleansing’ raises friction in church

Thursday February 11 2010

By NATION Correspondent

A ceremony to cleanse a church using a goat is causing friction among the faithful.

Bungoma Anglican bishop George Mechumo is set to cleanse St Mathew’s Church in Webuye after skirmishes there early last month, but Christians opposed to the ceremony say it is against Christian teachings.

The skirmishes followed the transfer of provost Joseph Weswa, who was later suspended. Diocese administration secretary Benjamin Kapukha said the ceremony would go on as planned.

The Nation learnt that a goat had been bought for the ceremony and police have been camping at the church to forestall clashes between two rival groups.

Revoke suspension

Most Christians have boycotted the church after the fighting in which three priests were seriously injured.

The pro-Weswa camp wants the head of the Anglican Church in Kenya, Archbishop Eliud Wabukala, to revoke his suspension, arguing that it was done in bad faith and against the spirit of reconciliation.

Provost Weswa, who was to appear before the church tribunal on Friday, has denied any involvement in the matter.

Reliable sources at the bishop’s office said that the provost had written to the prelate asking for reconciliation and unity in the church, but there has been no reply. Seventeen lay readers and evangelists have also been sent home.