Jomo Kenyatta is widely known as the founding father of nation of Kenya. He was tasked with uniting Kenya after stormy colonial times
Mzee Jomo Kenyatta, the father of president Uhuru Kenyatta and husband to Mama Ngina Kenyatta didn’t go to church for 15 years, it has now been revealed.
In 1914, he converted to Christianity and he assumed the name Johnstone Kamau upon baptism.
Having completed his studies and worked in Thika and Narok for a few years, Kenyatta landed a job in Nairobi as a meter-reader in 1920.
This is reportedly when Kenyatta started going against the church teachings and as a result angering church elders and missionaries.
When the elders could not have more of him, they summoned him and brought two charges against him.
According to his biographer Jeremy Murray-Brown, Kenyatta was accused of ” committing sin with a girl whom he is buying as a wife, and as a result of which she is with child”. The elders were referring to Grace Wahu who become Kenyatta’s first wife.
The second sin Johnstone had allegedly committed was taking alcohol against church teachings.
When he pleaded guilty to both charges, the elders suspended him from receiving the Holy Communion.
A defiant Kenyatta could not be shaken by the punishment. He married Wahu in a customary wedding and refused to quit alcohol.
As the final punishment, the church excommunicated him. That was the end of his relationship with the church.
Former presidents Arap Moi and Mwai Kibaki are staunch practising Christians and are often seen going to church services.
According to the Standard Kenyatta had told the presiding judge Ransley Thaker during the infamous Kapenguria Trial in 1953 that he was “agnostic.” meaning kafir.
His funeral service was, however, inter-denominational led by the late PCEA moderator Charles M Kareri.
Despite that, His son, President Uhuru Kenyatta is a staunch Christian often seen going to church together with his family.
The mausoleum is rarely opened on just other day, besides the annual memorial starring wreaths from his family members and nabobs in government, followed by a church service. Never mind that although his family is front-pew Roman Catholic, Kenyatta was not a practising Christian.