Report on Global Change Consultation at Ikuywa Friends Church, Central YM (Kenya)

 QUERY 1 How has global change affected our communities and ourselves?

The global change has made means of transport to be very fast. It is easy to move from one area to another. Infrastructure has improved. There is safety in the use of motor vehicles due to introduction of safety belts.

Communication through internet has affected us negatively through “Culture shock”. We are trying to imitate culture of other people at the expense of our local cultures. However through internet we can easily identify places that have employment opportunities. Use of cell phones has accelerated communication although excessive use many impair our hearing.

We have purified water in our locality. Access to water has been made easy due to construction of more boreholes. However there is need to regulate construction of this boreholes so that they meet the required environmental standards. Use of electricity has made lighting, cooking and even charging our telephones easy.

It is important to note that the cost of living has gone high. Life has just become unaffordable. Our farms have become less productive due to either excessive use of chemicals. The rise in population is high leading to scarcity of food. We are experiencing pollution through industrialization. The change has solved gender conflict whereby nowadays we have men and women doing the same work.

We have rise in diseases like cancer and HIV/AIDS. Our water has been contaminated.

Urbanization has given rise to closer shopping centers. People are moving from rural areas to town leading to over population in our cities. Our local streams are also drying up. Goldmineshave also caused more contamination to our water.

QUERY 2. What actions have we taken in response to global change as experienced in our area, to express our responsibilities towards all creation? In what ways have my own activities or those of my community contributed to positive or adverse local and global change?

We have engaged in the process of tree planting in our homes. We are resorting to alternative use of energy i.e. recycling charcoal.

We also encourage planting of indigenous trees in our homes to maintain the water table.

Since there is scarcity of food, we are using improved farming techniques to have more food production. Our local administration has enforced a restriction on harvesting of trees.

Adversely, we have planted exotic trees to the river banks leading to our rivers drying up.

I am a businessman involved in timber so I engage in cutting down trees”.

I use my cell phone to cheat”.

I cause pollution by improper disposal of radioactive elements”.

We do not have proper ways of disposing off plastics.

QUERY 3. How do changes around us affect our relationship with God? How does my relationship with God affect my responses to the changes around us? What role does faith have in my life and in the life of my community? In what ways do I and my Friends church or meeting community bear witness to our Testimonies in our daily lives?

Since we do not have a consistent income we end up not tithing to God properly. We have people engaged in crime to get money to enable them make a living. Our cell phones have made us liars. Our youth copy western lifestyle thus affecting our moral set up in the church. We have our young people living our church going to other churches where there is music instruments. We practice business and work on Sabbath day. We have witnessed cases of people undergoing plastic surgery to change their appearance (Michael Jackson). This is going against the creation plan of God. The change has led to a major split to the society. The poor cannot mix freely with the rich.

We have to work hard to assist one another. “If someone is lazy let him not eat”. I will stick to the scriptures when responding to the changes that are a head of me.

My faith prohibits marriage of the same sex. My faith does not allow me to put on the clothes of the opposite sex. My faith commands me to be submissive to my husband. We can give a testimony of cleanliness by having latrines in our homes. We are known to say the truth and truth a lone.

QUERY 4. What stories or experiences from past – of catastrophic happenings – perhaps from Scripture, perhaps from the record of local or regional events- might inspire us to respond to the changes the world is facing today?

In the year 2001 there was a man by the name of Mukhovero who went berserk and murdered the whole of his family. In total this man killed nine people. He did this act at Night. In order to get more to kill Mukhovero went from door to door seeking for assistance to take his “expectant wife to hospital”. The moment people opened their doors they were met with pang a cuts. The story goes on that Mukhovero took some of the human flesh from his victims and shared it as meat with some other people who were attending funeral in the same village.

QUERY 5. How can we bear witness to the abundance God offers us and testify to the world about ways in which justice, compassion, and peace may address significant disruptions, stress, and tensions?

Individual response “Through my timber business I have created job opportunities to those who are working with me”.

We encourage guiding and counseling.

As parents we need also to understand our young people. We should give hope to those who do not have hope in living. We should assist from the bottom of our hearts.

QUERY 6. How can we support one another in rekindling our love and respect for God’s Creation in such a way that we are messengers of the transforming power of love and hope?

We agree that at least there is something good from each individual. We should revive our initial love by respecting all the things that God created. When you are correcting someone show some passion. Do not just rebuke. We should have income generating projects so that we have no person lacking in our midst.