Anglican Church must pay Kenyan priests it said were gay

A Kenyan court has ordered the homophobic Anglican Church of Kenya to pay U.S. $67,000 to three priests whom it ousted in 2015 on unproven  allegations that they were homosexuals.

From the African Human Rights Media Network

The Rev. James Maina Maigua, Archdeacon John Njogu Gachau, and the Rev. Paul Mwangi Warui at Nyeri Law Courts in Kenya (Faith Nyamai photo courtesy of The Nation)
The Rev. James Maina Maigua, Archdeacon John Njogu Gachau, and the Rev. Paul Mwangi Warui at Nyeri Law Courts in Kenya in 2017. (Faith Nyamai photo courtesy of The Nation)

The Nation of Kenya reported:

ACK priests who sued church over gay claims get Sh6.8m

Three Anglican Church of Kenya priests from Nyeri who were initially suspended from pastoral duties over allegations of engaging in homosexuality have finally received a compensation of Sh6.8 million [about U.S. $67,000] from the church after a four-year court battle.

The compensation is for psychological trauma flowing from the circumstances their ministerial services in the church were terminated.

It also covers withheld salaries and benefits for the period their preaching licences had been withdrawn.

They were suspended from officiating church services in August 2015 and were reinstated by court in September 2016 after a finding that the suspension was unlawful.

Archdeacon John Gachau will receive Sh2.4 million while James Maigua and Paul Warui will get Sh2.2 million each.

Bishop Joseph Kagunda of the Anglican Church of Kenya announces on Sept. 11, 2015, the suspension of five priests accused of homosexual activity. (Photo courtesy of Nairobi News)
Bishop Joseph Kagunda of the Anglican Church of Kenya announced on Sept. 11, 2015, that he had suspended priests accused of homosexuality. (Photo courtesy of Nairobi News)

Justice Nzioki wa Makau of the Labour court in Nyeri Wednesday allowed the priests’ application to have the money, which was held in a joint bank account of the advocates involved in the case, released.

The judge, at the same time, dealt a blow to the church’s Mt Kenya West Bishop Joseph Mwangi Kagunda who sought to block the release of the funds. …

The church was fined Sh200,000 [about U.S. $1,970] in May this year after it was cited in contempt of court for failing to reinstate the priests back to their pastoral duties. …

Bishop Kagunda was also on July 12 sent to civil jail for contempt. …

The judge also directed the church to pay the legal costs of the suit capped at Sh520,000 [about U.S. $5,129].

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Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, and editor / publisher of Erasing 76 Crimes. Contact him at [email protected]

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