Reformed Baptists in Kenya
The Reformed Baptist churches of Kenya held their annual meeting from 26 February to 1 March in the rural area outside Machakos. This is about 2 hours’ drive from Nairobi.
The venue was a church in Kiatuni – one of several churches grown out of the ministry of Trinity Baptist Church, Nairobi, pastored by Keith Underhill for the past 30 years.
Six of the 8 provinces of Kenya were represented; and there was also a brother from Tanzania. Almost all attendees had been through the ministerial training programme run by Trinity, Nairobi.
There were papers on: the pastor and church; the pastor and family; and the pastor and community. The first was the most comprehensive ever heard by the writer of this report.
Afternoon sessions were given to discussing the relevant morning addresses. Practical issues considered in these included ‘What should a Christian leader be like?’ and ‘Should a pastor resign if he has a rebellious child?’
Each church representative gave a report and, after every three such, there was prayer for each of their churches. Altogether there were 22 reports covering 38 churches. None have large memberships; only three have more than 50 members; only seven have a functioning plurality of eldership, while a further two have just one appointed elder.
A moving report was given by one pastor. He described how the house he built was washed away in recent floods and how he had been hampered by a bad back injury, as well as losing his books to termites.
The church leaders present were, by UK standards, very poor. They face many problems, but they minister faithfully amidst Kenya’s religious confusion.