The territory of today's Kenya was inhabited by groups like the Kikuyu, the Masai, and many others when the British colonized it in 1895. Through the Mau Mau uprising in the early 1950s the Kenyan people recovered their independence, in 1963, under Mzee Jomo Kenyatta. From 1969 onwards the country had a one-
party system. The 1990s were characterized by political oppression, violence and misuse of state resources. The economy, mainly based on agriculture and the export of tea and coffee, was adversely affected by mismanagement, and severely hit by drought in 1999 and 2000. Kenya has played a key role in the peace settlements in Somalia and in the southern Sudan, in 2005. It has borne the brunt of the impact of refugees and prevalence of arms from the two countries. The Christian churches in Kenya are strong. The Protestant and Anglican churches, through the national council, and the Catholic Church have repeatedly spoken out and acted against the mismanagement and corruption of political leaders, and contributed to the democratic changes in 2002. Besides these churches, there are many other large African Instituted, Pentecostal, Evangelical, and independent churches. The Evangelical Fellowship of Kenya is affiliated with the WEA. Orthodoxy in Kenya comes mainly under the Patriarchate of Alexandria and the Coptic Orthodox Church. Some of the pressing challenges are high rates of poverty, as most Kenyans live below US$1 per day, and the impact of the HIV/AIDS pandemic.
More on Kenya:
Ecumenical solidarity visit to Kenya
Churches working for peace amidst a wave of post electoral violence in Kenya received a pastoral and solidarity visit of an international ecumenical delegation sent by the World Council of Churches (WCC) from 30 January to 3 February 2008. Read more about the visit to Kenya...
Church life in Kenya
Multimedia portraits of the African Church of the Holy Spirit and the Coptic Church in Kenya can be viewed on the 'Keeping the Faith' website.