15 September 2019 | A third Adventist congregation in Nairobi, Kenya, has decided to leave the official Adventist conference in the region and join a rival, newly formed conference as deep disagreements continue to divide the denomination in the region.
KPCU SDA Church, in Mowlem, Nairobi, left the Central Kenya Conference (CKK) to join the new Nairobi Cosmopolitan Conference (NCC.) According to Standard Media, the action was voted by the congregation on September 14.
A notice from the church reads “SDA KPCU Church has joined the NCC. This decision is not contestable in whatsoever manner. Members plead that their decision is respected under SDA religious liberty policies and Constitution of Kenya on choice of association.”
The congregation follows the footsteps of Kangemi’s Mountain View SDA and Makandi SDA Church in Meru that also left the CKC to join the NCC.
The CKC has dismissed the NCC as a private company that lacks the authority to run churches.
According to Standard Media, a fourth congregation, Saika West SDA church, also voted in a church business meeting last Saturday to leave the CKC for the NCC but has yet to inform the CKC.
The departure of these churches adds to controversy in the CKC following alleged death threats against the senior pastor of Nairobi Central SDA Church. The congregation has been the scene of major controversy over the last several weeks, with physical violence and other disruptions leading to the temporary shuttering of the church by authorities recently. The church has since been reopened.
One major source of the tension at the church was a dispute over a 2015 election in which heads of the Central Kenya Conference of the denomination were chosen. Some felt that the election process was manipulated and that appointments had been biased by ethnic divisions.
In the wake of the election, the Nairobi Cosmopolitan Conference was formed as a rival to the Central Kenya Conference.