Single and searching: 10 types of churchgoers in Kenya

Some attend church during the day, but visit waganga at night

A church, those in the know say, is like a swamp where different breeds of creatures find a home.  In any typical church in Kenya, don’t be surprised to find all sorts of people who go there for different reasons, some genuinely rebuilding their acquaintance with God, others with hidden agendas whose details only the devil knows.

While some listen attentively to sermons interjecting with hisses of ‘Amen!’ others could be dozing off the sleep balance from last night’s booze while others appear to attend just in case hell fire is real.

Here are 10 types of Kenyan church goers.

1. The attention seekers

They attend church to flaunt their latest kitenge outfits besides showing off their latest ride, bought on loan though.

Others seek attention with the latest gadgets mostly cell phones when not taking photos with the largest wide screen tablets or singing loudest.

Others make impossible harambee pledges like buying the church a Sh2 million sound system when not issuing “mighty testimonies” of miracles which never happened.

2. The Holy Joe/Josephine

They chunguzaa whether others are living in accordance to maandiko takatifu besides castigating those preaching water while drinking wine.

They consider themselves holier than the bishop until they contract kaswende from the ‘devil’.

3. The overdraft Christians

They appear for Easter Kesha and the next time you see them it is the December 31 thanksgiving service. 

They make technical appearances during a friend’s funeral service before reappearing during their kid’s baptism two years later. Their spirituality is normally on overdraft but they don’t give a damn.

4. The secret lives

These are angels inside the church but devils when outside and are worse than the unsaved: they drink, pound their wives (no pun intended), neglect their children and fornicate with reckless abandon.

Some attend church during the day, but visit waganga at night. Most verses about hell fire was coined with them in mind. 

5. The time killers

Some Christians go to church simply because Sundays are boring and they have nothing better to do.

When a ka-deal swings their way or when there is an out of town excursion, they skive church faster than you can say “Mbegu ya 310”.

6. The spectators

These ones are mostly dragged to church by threats from their wives, the pastor or children.

Disengaged, they normally sit through the rituals with marked disinterest. They rarely close their eyes during prayers as they watch how choir girls look like with eyes closed.

They also find it odd responding to the worship leader on makofi ya juu or cheza kidogo as they stare at how others are doing it with bemused nonchalance.

7. The sadaka haters

They hardly tithe or give sadaka, arguing that most pastors waste money on the good life while kondoo ya mungu wallow in poverty.

The highest they can cough up is Sh50 and only when everybody is staring at them when the sadaka tray comes their way.

They also avoid church harambees like the plague and find all excuses to skip them because “it is a form of extortion”.

8. The roho mtaka zote

These are the pickpockets who can’t hurumia your handbag, misplaced phone or protruding wallet.

They have also been known to make way with a bag full of sadaka as they don’t attend church to pray but to prey on other people’s property.

9.  The single and searching

There are hardly better places beside the hood or workplace to fish for a future spouse. You always see her or him on Sundays and can observe them without drawing attention.

They join the choir, you develop bass or alto. There is a kesha, you can’t sleep that day either. They join a prayer group, you become the organizing secretary.

10.  The spouse followers

There are those who attend church because it was an ultimatum: You go to church or this relationship is over.

It is not uncommon to find PCEA women attending Catholic Mass because that’s the hubby’s church while a staunch SDA might switch to the Akorino sect or Dini ya Msambwa because the hubby warned “kama hunifuati, funga virago.”


The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of