There was shock in Gaitega AIPCA church in Kahuro subcounty, Murang’a County after church goers found a man living inside the church.
The faithfuls discovered that the unknown man was living in their church on Saturday evening when a group of them went to clean it in preparation for the Sunday service.
The group was shocked to find that keys to the church were not where they are usually kept yet the church was locked.
They went in using a window only to find the church dirty and disorganized, and informed the leadership of the church.
According to Stephen Kigo, church leaders immediately made their way there to assess the situation and determine the next course of action.
“We were so shocked to find that someone had made our church his home,” Kigo said.
The man, Kigo said, had broken into the church and into the vestry which he had converted into a bedroom.
He had laid a mattress on the floor of the vestry and used three stones and church utensils for his cooking.
“This man used Holy Communion cups and trays to cook matoke that he may have stolen from the neighborhood,” the faithful said.
He also used candles used for Sunday services for his lighting and wore clothes worn by church youths to perform, clothes worn by priests and church covers.
Feathers found near his cooking area indicated that he may have also been feeding on birds.
Kigo said a group of church leaders and faithful stayed in the church overnight on Saturday waiting for the man to return but he did not.
“We thought he would come back because his mattress was still lying on the floor in the vestry and he had gone with the keys,” he said.
Monicah Wanjiku, another faithful, said the church will be praying for the culprit to comprehend the essence of a house of worship and respect it.
“This man had misused clothes and items used in worship with disregard which shows he does not understand what a church really means,” she said.
“We will not condemn him but pray that he acknowledges his wrongs and repent. A house of God is to be respected and failure to can be detrimental,” she added.
The church’s deacon Kariuki Kang’ethe said they had to perform a cleansing ceremony before the Sunday service could take place.
“The man must be of sane mind but we do not know why he decided to get into our church or what he may have been doing in it so we could not use the church before praying and cleansing it,” Kang’athe said.