Against “natural order of beings”: Kenyan Catholic Bishop on Support for LGBTQ Tendencies

Screengrab of Bishop Joseph Ndembu Mbatia from a video recording that Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC) Digital published on Sunday, March 5.

The Catholic Bishop of Nyahururu Diocese in Kenya has faulted those expressing support for associations that exist to promote Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ) tendencies, saying behaviors related to LGBTQ orientations go against the “natural order of beings”.

In a video recording that Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC) Digital published on Sunday, March 5, Bishop Joseph Ndembu Mbatia also faulted moves to introduce pupils to LGBTQ in proposed Competency Based Curriculum (CBC) in Kenya.

"The support of LGBTQ goes against the natural order, the natural order of beings," Bishop Mbatia said, adding that “even animals, which are not gifted with the gift of intellect, the gift of reason, do not go against their natural order.”

“If those who do not have much reason can understand that, if the animals cannot come up with that, why not even human beings?” he posed in an attempt to question why individuals would choose to go against the natural order of things since creation.  

Bishop Mbatia made reference to the Scriptural accounts, which he said give instructions about the appropriate relationships between men and women. 


"Genesis chapter 1 and chapter 2 tells us why God created man and why God created a woman; God created a man and a woman for each other," the Local Ordinary of Nyahururu Diocese said.

He also expressed concern about the move to introduce LGBTQ in Kenyan schools through the proposed education curriculum. 

He said, “I was just looking at what is being taught and CBC has come with a chat indicating that there are many types of families. You find that there is a family of two women and a child. Where did they get the child? And then there is a family of a man and a man with a child, but where did they get the child?”

“What was the thinking of the person who drew those pictures to be taught in schools? No child was born without a father or a mother,” the Kenyan Catholic Bishop said. 

Bishop Mbatia made his remarks against the backdrop of criticisms of Kenya’s Supreme Court majority ruling allowing the registration of LGBTQ Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). 

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On February 24, Kenya’s apex court ruled that people with homosexual orientation have a right to form and register associations in the East African nation, three judges in the five-judge bench arguing that “despite gayism being illegal (in Kenya), they have a right of association.”

In the ruling in which Justice Mohamed Ibrahim and William Ouko put in writing dissenting opinions against the majority decision delivered by Justices Philomena Mwilu, Smokin Wanjala, and Njoki Ndung’u, LGBTQ entities can operate at will after they are registered in Kenya.

The Archbishop of Nairobi joined other Christian leaders and groups that have faulted the Supreme Court ruling, including members of the Kenya Christian Professionals Forum (KCPF), Archbishop Anthony Muheria of Kenya’s Nyeri Archdiocese, and the Speaker of  National Assembly of Kenya, Moses Wetangula, among others.

In a statement he instructed members of the Clergy in Nairobi to share with their respective congregations during Sunday, March 5 liturgical celebrations, Archbishop Philip Anyolo called upon Christians “to be vigilant”.

“We encourage all our Christians to continue to uphold, protect and to safe guard our Christian moral teachings against  secular, worldly same sex attractions, affiliations  and associations such as LGBTQI that are currently being promoted and encouraged in many different ways including  legal backing,” Archbishop Anyolo stated.


He voiced his opposition to what he termed “evil trends that seek to introduce confusion and damage to his image in us.”

“May God who created us with clear sex differentiation, according to the book of Genesis 1: 27,  'male and female, in his own image he created them', strengthen our faith and moral standing against these evil  trends that seek to introduce confusion and damage to his image in us,” the Kenyan Catholic Archbishop implored. 

He further implored that God grant the followers of Jesus Christ in Kenya “sufficient grace to be  vigilant enough to protect, promote and advance our Human and Christian dignity.”

“As a Church we are strongly opposed to such immoral practices,” the Archbishop of Nairobi said in his note to members of the Clergy ministering in his Metropolitan See titled, “A call to be vigilant”.

On his part, the member of Parliament (MP) for Homa Bay Town in Kenya, Peter Kaluma, has vowed the fight the registration of LGBTQ rights group both on the floor of the August House and in the Kenyan courts.

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Speaking at a press conference that Kenya’s Nation Media published on YouTube, Hon. Kaluma described those in support of the registration of LGBTQ rights group in Kenya as “Sodom and Gomorrah”.

“I appreciate what is happening; the bill has been drafted. We are now waiting for Parliament to move forward, but as we do that, we want to encourage our institutions to know that they exist for Kenya, not for foreign power,” the Kenyan MP said. 

He added, “The Supreme Court rightly says these things are criminal acts in Kenya; they're not just sins. But then the Supreme Court goes ahead and says that the association of these criminals still has to be registered. What are you talking about?”

“What a contradiction! It's like telling murder convicts you can register murderers’ Association. What will stop terrorists from approaching the NGO’s board to say we also want to be registered? What will stop rapists from saying we can now be registered,” Hon. Kaluma continued. 

The Homa Bay Town MP further said, “The Constitution also says nobody, no Authority including the Supreme Court has the power to make any provision with the force of law other than this Parliament. So, if we don't succeed in that Supreme Court, there will be a provision in the bill we are going to propose that we will deregister, if they would have been registered, any organization encouraging or promoting this vice.”

“We want everybody to be on the alert, more so for their children for truly these are the future of our society,” he further said, adding, “This is a battle we must succeed on and it's a battle that anybody pushing it down our throats will never win; if it is what will make Kenya poor I don't think Uganda is any poorer having passed it.”

He lauded faith-based leaders for making known their stance on the matter, saying, “I'm very happy with my church, the Catholic church, and I'm very happy with the other religious organizations, including the Muslims the Hindus; I'm happy that the church (leaders are) voicing their moral position.”

Meanwhile, members of CitizenGo Africa have petitioned lawmakers in Kenya to highlight the displeasure of Kenyans with the majority Supreme Court ruling. 

The Catholic activists of the African branch of the International activist organization, CitizenGo, say the three judges who voted for the registration of LGBTQ NGOs “averred that the term sex used in article 27 of the constitution encompasses sexual orientation while we know the term sex to mean either a) sexual intercourse (male and female) or b) the state of being male or female based on reproductive function.”

“With one stroke of the pen, the judges have turned our national, cultural, and moral values upside down,” they say, adding that the judgment “has set us on a slippery slope as the NGO will have the capacity to charge anybody who disagrees with its position or denies its members access to schools, religious institutions, and civil service with discrimination.”

The NGO Board will also have the capacity to ask the court to declare the section of the penal code that criminalizes homosexual relationships unconstitutional, CitizenGo Africa members say in the February 27 petition addressed to the Speakers of Kenya’s Parliament and Senate, Hon. Moses Wetangula and Amason Kingi, respectively. 

CitizenGo Africa members are also calling on Kenyan lawmakers to debate the Supreme Court ruling and its effect on constitutional and cultural values and “to discuss possible safeguards to avoid harmful gay ideology spreading in Kenya.”

Lawmakers should also “consider amendment of various laws including the Education Act, the Children Act, the Films and Stage Plays Act, the Marriage Act, and the Sexual Offences Act to prohibit gay propaganda,” they say. 

They also urge Kenyan lawmakers to “propose a Family Charter plus the establishment of a Family Department in government to work towards greater recognition and protection of the family and family values.”

Magdalene Kahiu is a Kenyan journalist with passion in Church communication. She holds a Degree in Social Communications from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). Currently, she works as a journalist for ACI Africa.