An inter-denominational prayer rally scheduled to take place in Kenol town, Murang’a County on Saturday where Deputy President William Ruto was expected has been canceled.
This follows sharp divisions among the bishops who were planning the meeting.
The rally is meant to pray for, among other things, national cohesion and integration besides praying for the deputy president and was planned by 11 bishops who were expected to meet Dr Ruto at a hotel before proceeding to Kimorori grounds for the prayer meeting.
The forum’s steering committee members include Murang’a Catholic Bishop James Maria Wainaina, ACK Diocese of Mt Kenya Central Timothy Gichere, his Murang’a South Diocese counterpart Julius Karanu and Thika Diocese Bishop Julius Wanyoike.
Others are AIPCA Archbishop John Njoroge, Gilbert Maina of EAPC, and Rev John Mwati of PCEA, among others.
However sharp divisions have emerged among the clergy with the Catholic bishop claiming that although he was aware that there was a planning meeting, he never attended it and was not planning to attend the postponed rally since he has other commitments.
“I never attended any steering committee meeting and I was not planning to attend the prayer rally since I have another retreat.”
On his part, Bishop George Kariuki of Christian Foundation Fellowship (CFF) told a local daily that the divisions among them could have emerged due to the recent national debate on Dr Ruto’s contributions to churches.
He disclosed that the meeting was planned last year when over 250 clergymen met Dr Ruto at his Karen home.
Bishop Kariuki said the DP had agreed to visit them and launch a sacco and at the same time grace the prayer rally.
Some of the leaders who were expected at the rally include Murang’a Senator Irungu Kang’ata, Maragua MP Mary Waithira, Kandara MP Alice Wahome and at least 150 leaders in the Jubilee faction allied to Dr Ruto.
The postponement of the rally comes at a time when ACK and the Catholic Church heads have cautioned their congregations against accepting “dirty money” and allowing leaders to insult each other on the pulpit.
And in a new development, three Anglican bishops have disassociated themselves with the planned rally, saying they do not want to be dragged into the current political controversies.
The three are Dr Julius Wanyoike of Thika Diocese, Julius Karanu of Mt Kenya South and Mt Kenya Central’s Timothy Gichere.
The merging divisions are likely to throw the planned rally into limbo.
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