Married ‘Catholic’ priests ordained in Nyeri on Easter eve
Ululations rent the air on Easter’s eve at Gachatha village in Nyeri County after a Catholic splinter group, which allows priests to have families ordained three new clergies to spread its wings.
Seventy-year-old Mathew Theuri was ordained as a priest, while Jacob Ndida (40) and Phillip Muiga (75) were ordained as Deacons of the Renewed Universal Catholic Church.
The ceremony was presided over by the Church Mount Kenya region Archbishop Peter Njogu at Gachatha church in Tetu sub-county.
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Wearing priestly robes, the three said they were happy over the ceremony, which will mark a new chapter in their lives to continue spreading the gospel of Christianity.
The event was marked by joy and celebrations as the priests were lined up with their families as they took vows of the church.
Mr Theuri was accompanied by his wife Nancy Waheti and their seven children.
Mr Ndida’s wife Jecinta Thenya with two children stood alongside him as he took the vows.
While Mr Muiga’s wife Octavia Wangari with her five children also stood with her husband to witness the ceremony.
In the church, which was full to the brim and conducted on the eve of Easter holiday, the Archbishop said there were all reasons to allow Catholic priests marry have families.
He said “barring Fathers from having wives of their choice encourages engagement in illicit sexual affairs secretly”.
The priests who were earlier in the mainstream Catholic Church are now happy to have been ordained at the Renewed Church which is an alternative church involving married men and women.
“Denying the fathers their right is unnatural and un-Godly. Time for mandatory celibacy is gone. Africans should also welcome this new move of Catholic priests instead of doing it secretly as is the case currently,” said Archbishop Njogu.
He added that the church has since spread its wings to Othaya, Nyeri town, Meru, Nakuru, Tetu and Nairobi among other areas.
It is now planning to open other branches in Lamu, Coast region, and Njoro areas.
“Even other churches are being led by men of God who have families and the families are proud of it. The wife and the children are proud knowing they have the head of the family who also serves God,” he said.