Sunday, October 9, 2011
We had an all conference meeting here in Bunda yesterday. I was in too much pain from Friday to attend, but I did send refreshments for the thirty people from all the circuits that attended. After the meeting, Bishop Monto and the General Secretary, Pastor Nyanza, came over to give me a rundown of all that happened. One of the members of the Bunda church who has been causing problems for my family and the church has received an official letter that he is no longer a member of the church or the conference. He has been receiving money from the Kenya church to disrupt and cause problems and that was proved yesterday. We have now had three court cases from the rogue pastor (Makena) representing the Kenya church and we have won them all. We won in Magu, in Tireme, and in Musoma. The Kenya church is trying to gain control of all money and property of the Methodist Church in Tanzania (including our building and land here in Bunda) and has failed repeatedly. Apparently, they have been receiving money from other countries specifically for the church in Tanzania but have been keeping the money. If we are truly an autonomous church, as the courts have repeatedly agreed, then the church in Kenya will lose money. I don't think we would ever see any of it anyway, but why else would they be fighting so hard to regain control of a church they haven't supported or cared about for years? Anyway, they have made one last big try by Rev. Makena claiming to represent the Methodist Church in Tanzania (he doesn't, of course) but he bribed a magistrate and now Bishop Monto has to respond to a suit by the Methodist Church in Tanzania against himself. They will lose again because their argument is just silly and we have all the documentation, charters, meeting minutes, and three previous court cases all deciding that we are the only official church with no ties to Kenya. We even have the voting results when Bishop Monto was elected bishop and there is Rev. Makena's name, in his own handwriting, voting for Monto as Bishop. Again, it is very sad. We have to spend money (a few hundred dollars) to defend this and that money could have been put to much better use. The Apostle Paul said Christians were not to sue each other and of course, this is counter to all that Christ taught and lived. A sad commentary on the church in Kenya, but we will prevail again. If God is for us, who can be against us?