Wounded healers, mirth amidst tears
Parklands Baptist Church draws its membership largely from the who-is-who in the city and the country (international NGO-types, diplomats, civil servants, security types, etc) – Senior Pastor Ambrose Nyangao yesterday challenged politicians in the congregation to do right (yesterday we had a Cabinet Minister and an ODM MP in attendance).
Missions Pastor Simon Mwangi reviewed our congregation’s engagement with the crisis thus far.
PBC is all over, praying and lending a hand in meeting the needs of those wounded by the situation.
Things still don’t look good from what I heard him say – there are too many needs, particularly in the IDP camps in the city.
Some of our Church members, chased from their homes in the city’s estates (and more are having to flee), are also in the camps.
Most of them, Pr. Mwangi said, only want fare and safe passage to shags.
Pr. Mwangi himself experienced the realities of the crisis first-hand.
One of our members, hailing from Kericho in Rift Valley province, passed away a few days ago.
Late last week, Pr. Mwangi (a Kikuyu) and one of our deacons, a Kalenjin, went to view the body at Lee Funeral Home.
“As we pondered over the funeral arrangements, it occurred to me that we were not going to have it easy burying our member. I wondered if Deacon Rono would be willing to get into my car’s boot so that I drive him safely up to Molo, for me to take his place so that he gets me to Kericho safely,” he said, amidst laughter from the congregation.
Pr. Mwangi and Deacon Rono are not the only reason I I have had to laugh during this crisis.
There is the case of Q, one of my neighbours in the village.
Q has some daughters, who have a reputation of being generous with their bodies in the area, much to Q’s anger.
So early on in the crisis, I am home catching up with the day’s news (I’m the quiet, indoors kind) when I hear people wailing in the village.
For security reasons, I stay put.
The following day, I learn that Q had been beating his daughters for returning home late when the country is so tense and fluid.
Close to 60 neighbors had rushed to his home, armed to the teeth, thinking he had been attacked (he is one of the well-to-do folks in the village), only to find that it was his daughters wailing.
“Huu ni wakati mbaya kupiga mwanamke (this is a bad time to beat a woman). Ukiwapiga tena tutakupiga wewe mwenyewe (if you beat them again we’ll beat you up),” they told him.
(Un)fortunately, the daughters have remained unbeaten since then.
Village wags continue to offer variations of the incident, much to everyone’s comic relief.
In another incident, there is this close relative of mine who – being in the employ of one of my opponents for the Cherangany seat – fought me hard in the campaigns.
Apparently, he never thought he would need me in his life ever again.
As I write, I stand to drink much quality milk from his very good livestock, as he considers bringing them into my compound fearing for their safety in the part of Cherangany that he resides.
How long I’ll use his milk depends absolutely on how long RO and MK take to agree.
1. A source informs me that another of my opponents spent Kshs. 30,000,000 in the campaigns. He lost. Yours truly spent no more than Kshs. 200,000 in all.
2. When MK talks about truth and justice in Addis, I wonder if he would be prepared to have his foot-soldiers also face the music over pre-poll and post-poll violence? My campaign experienced some, some of it pre-meditated.
3. More vacuous hand-wringing from Addis Ababa and NY over N’Djamena (and Nairobi).
4. And another creative one from the World Council of Churches over the Kenyan question. There have been several others from other Christian bodies, some of which I can’t recall.