African Christian Church & Schools

Church family:African Instituted churches
Based in:Kenya
Present in:

About membership

Statistics of church membership, number of churches, congregations, pastors, etc. are those given by the churches and organizations, unless otherwise indicated. WCC member churches have various ways of defining their membership: state churches in which virtually every citizen is baptized and thus counted as a member, churches which include in their membership persons who are baptized but not actively participating, churches in which only adult baptized or communicant members are counted, etc. No attempt has been made to classify the membership figures in such categories, because agreed upon indicators to so do not exist.

Member of:
 WCC (1975) 
Associate member of:

This church has its beginnings in the work of the Africa Inland Mission from 1905 onwards. A conflict arose in 1947 when Kikuyu (one of the main ethnic groups in Kenya) pastors and elders urged the missionaries to provide institutions for higher education, besides the existing primary schools. As the request was refused, the African Christian Church and Schools (ACC&S) proclaimed its independence in 1948. All its elementary and secondary schools were later recognized officially and partly taken over by the government. The pastoral role in these schools has remained the responsibility of the ACC&S. Although differing in educational policy, the church has maintained the traditions of its parent mission in matters of faith, church order and rules of conduct. Originally confined to the Agikuyu tribe, it has now extended to seven of the eight provinces in Kenya.

The church has a Bible college that trains the ministers to the diploma level. For higher learning, the ACC&S sends its candidates to the local theological colleges and to Canadian and US universities. Four health centres for preventive and curative care are run by the church. It is also actively involved in the fight against HIV/AIDS which is a major challenge for the Kenyan people.

The structure of the ACC&S is essentially democratic. Each local church sends three delegates to the parish council and the parish council sends three delegates to the regional council. Delegates from the regions form the supreme governing body called the ACC&S general council, which elects the moderator, the general secretary and the other officers. Various departments look after the Sunday schools, the Girls and Boys Brigade, the choir and youth. Canadian Baptist missionaries assist the church in leadership training.

Last updated: 1.1.2006