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Home Events > 12, Jul 2023
DLPDI Hosts Church Leadership & Governance Dialogue

Rev. Dr. Patrick Musembi, FCS Jeremiah Karanja, Dr. Joseph Nzioki (moderator) , Bishop John Warari, and Bishop Dr. Sammy Gitaari in panel discussion during the Church Governance and Leadership Dialogue

From 12th July 2023, Daystar University hosted a three-day dialogue forum on Church Leadership and Governance at its Nairobi Campus.  

The momentous three-day event was held in partnership with the National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK), the Organization of African Instituted Churches, Christian Alliance for National Transformation (CANAT), Kenya Coalition of Church Alliances and Ministry (KCCAM) and the Daystar Leadership & Professional Development Institute (DLPDI).  

This dialogue event aimed at positively transforming governance and leadership in Churches in Kenya, including, extended religious gatherings.  

The dialogue was steered by the Institute of Certified Secretaries under the leadership of the CEO, FCS Jeremiah Karanja, whose mission (ICS) aims at developing and guiding on sustainability and governance standards in organizations. 

The event involved a panel discussion featuring the Dean, School of Arts and Social Sciences, Rev. Dr. Patrick Musembi, the CEO, Institute of Certified Secretaries, FCS Jeremiah Karanja, Bishop Dr. Sammy Gitaari from the Christian Alliance for National Transformation (CANAT), and Bishop John Warari of Tabernacle International Ministries and Executive Member, Inter-religious Council of Kenya. The session was moderated by Dr. Joseph Nzioki, Senior Lecturer in Beulah Heights University.  

The Church Leadership and Governance Dialogue was graced by Prof. William Ogara, a Consultant in Leadership and Governance and Former Head of Consultancy and Research at CORAT Africa, Dr. Martin Oloo, the Acting Dean, Daystar University School of Law, and FCS Jeremiah Karanja, the CEO, Institute of Certified Secretaries.  

In his address, Prof. Ogara outlined the four models of Church governance witnessed in today’s religious gatherings including: episcopal model used by the Anglican and Catholic Churches, Mega Churches’ model which gives accountability to the senior pastor, the congregational model where authority resides with the congregation, and the Presbyterian model where accountability lies with a group of local ministers and elders in a particular region.  

Prof. Ogara urged Church leaders to embrace independence in their dealings with the government in order to have a better society, “We are in danger as a country today when we become too close with the government to the extent where we cannot have constructive engagement with the government,” he said.  

Prof. Ogara concluded with a reflective statement for churches to consider: “A self-sufficient inward-looking church cannot survive in radically changing societies; only a church liberated from its self-captivity, and one that creates societal dialogue can become a living source of God’s empowering and transforming grace.” 

On his part, FCS Jeremiah Karanja enlightened on the role of ICS and its hand in promoting good governance and leadership in churches. In his discussion FCS Karanja touched on initiatives and emerging issues in churches, and top church risks and risk management processes. He said some of the emerging issues included changing worldviews on morality and social issues for example LGBTQ, declining church attendance, mental health and emotional well-being, racial and tribal reconciliation, and social justice.  

The Acting Dean School of Law, Dr. Martin Oloo gave a legal perspective of the operation of churches in Kenya as stipulated in the Kenyan Constitution. In his humorous address, Dr. Oloo underscored the importance of such principles as closure and transparency, rights and equitable treatment of congregants as shareholders and owners, responsibilities of the board, institutional partners, donors, friends, supporters, and other intermediaries. The law scholar adeptly took the attendees through some of the nitty-gritties of registration of churches in Kenya as well as the position of worship constitutionally, under article 32 of the Bill of Rights.