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Kenyan preachers burn HIV medication

Kenyan preachers burn HIV medication

HIV-infected Kenyans are being told that by a group of Pentecostal preachers that their anti-retroviral medication is useless, and that only the power of prayer will deliver them from the virus.

Worse, affected people are being asked to pay for their “healing” ceremonies.

According to this report, the ceremonies begin with a “miracle blessing” of the HIV-infected person. Afterwards, the pastor burns the person’s anti-retroviral medications and declares them “cured”. Then the church charges the person a fee and sends them on their way.

AIDS workers in Kenya have been pushing for better education and medication for people affected by HIV

AIDS workers in Kenya have been pushing for better education and medication for people affected by HIV. Superstitious beliefs serve only to hinder their efforts.

Pastor Joseph Maina of Agmo Prayer Mountain, a Pentecostal church located just outside of Nairobi, said:

I believe people can be healed of all kinds of sickness, including HIV, through prayers. We don’t ask for money, but we ask them to leave some seed money that they please.

But reports that people have given their life savings for the so-called “cure” have begun surfacing.

Margaret Lavonga said she was required to pay $12 just to be accepted as a candidate for the miracle treatment, and an additional $24 after it had been completed. The pastor then confiscated her meds and set them on fire. Afterwards, she was sent to a clinic for a “test” that confirmed she was HIV-free.

Lavonga said:

I was upbeat, but after two weeks I started falling sick. When I was tested, the virus was still in me and had multiplied since I was not taking the drugs.

INERELA+, an interfaith network of religious leaders living with or affected by HIV, reports that an average of 10 people per month undergo the “miracle” treatment in Nairobi. Their documents show as many as 2,000 total cases in Kenya as a whole.

In a country where HIV is still heavily stigmatised, many people turn to the so-called “cure” out of fear or because they don’t want to follow a lifelong drug regimen. But quitting treatment can be dangerous as it can cause a person to become resistant to the drugs. It can also lead to death, which has been the case for many individuals. Four people who participated in the healing ceremony with Lavonga died within a month.

It’s estimated that 1.6 million people are currently living with HIV in Kenya. So far, the government has not taken any action to stop the pastors from promoting the bogus cure, despite the thousands of people who have been hurt or who have died as a result.

Hat tip: George Broadhead

37 Responses to “Kenyan preachers burn HIV medication”

  1. Trevor Blake says:

    In Luke 12:27, Jesus says his followers should not worry about money. It would be a fine testament to their faith if these preachers burned their own money as they burned other’s medicines. Yet this happens so seldom… mostly it’s prayer for thee, money for me.

  2. ExPatriot says:

    Thease preacheras are commiting nothing more than mass murders and need to be jailed for life or worse

  3. Broga says:

    Religion is more widespread and toxic than HIV. It preys on the ignorant. All the more reason for those of us who are not ignorant to challenge the superstition.

    TfTD was an example today of assuming unquestioning acceptance of nonsense as fact. We had a number of references to what Jesus actually said: in English of course. Stuck on the end of a programme aimed at those with some education and political interest the existence of this drivel is a stain on the BBC.

  4. stargraves says:

    So the Pastors are practically both thieves and murderers!

  5. Angela_K says:

    No surprise when the religious idiots in most of Africa say that using condoms gives you AIDS.

  6. Ivan says:

    Depressing. Just depressing.

  7. TrickyDicky says:

    @TrevorBlake

    “a fine testament to their faith if these preachers burned their own money”

    And then let their Lord provide the E class and M class mercs

  8. jada says:

    I think they should be left to see the consequences of these healing ceremonies and the effectiveness of prayer. How else will they learn?

  9. Broga says:

    OT but this involves one of the more contemptible Christians we encounter. “Andrea Minichiello Williams, the head of a Christian charity has today provoked outrage by reportedly claiming Olympic diver Tom Daley is homosexual because his father died.”

    The response has been such that it is clear that even Christians are outraged by this bigot. She is a member of an influential body in the C. of E. If they are serious about their outrage they will boot her out and fast. Also, by what possible criteria can the outfit this woman runs be regarded as a charity. That needs looking at very quickly.

    Williams is an excellent advocate for atheism. What civilised person could possible want to be a member of the same church as Williams. Time for action by the Archbishop of Canterbury!

  10. L.Long says:

    I’ve had Xtians accuse atheists of liking eugenics.
    But looks to me that xtians hate Africans and are on a eugenics kick to wipe them out. Between NO CONDOMS, STD’s and witches they should be done soon.
    And for the kids and NON-Xtian I feel sorry for, because the xtian ‘victims’ ‘believe’ this BS so ‘short life’ to them all. But unfortunately the infected will be having intimate contact with kids and others and they do not deserve the infections because some idiot is ‘praying’; and NO I did not say the infected xtians deserve the infection, as that is bad as well. Solid & cheap cures and treatments are needed but then you have to get dim witted sheeple to use them, this is where preachers show themselves as truly evil people.

  11. Stephen Mynett says:

    This sort of shit has been going on a long time and is a problem here as well: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-23729684

    I am unsure how exactly a law could be worded or enforced but faith healing is a massive problem and needs to be looked at properly. All churches and religions target the most vulnerable and Being PC and CR is certainly not the answer, these religious creeps are killing people.

  12. 20% Off says:

    Easy to handle – just let it happen. Its called natural selection. Stupid genes will be removed from the gene pool.

  13. Great+Satan says:

    This Pakistani Muslim “news” reader has handed a gay couple to the police ; http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/pakistani-tv-news-involved-arrest-gay-couple-calls-stoning181213#

  14. andym says:

    “Religion is more widespread and toxic than HIV.” Yes. Science has found a way of controlling if not actually curing people of HIV (where bigots can’t interfere with treatment, of course.) If only they could do the same with religion.

    OT. It’s not often I find myself even vaguely in agreement with both Prince Charles and Archbishop Cranmer at the same time.
    http://archbishop-cranmer.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/prince-charles-confronts-baroness-warsi.html

  15. Broga says:

    @barriejohn: Thanks. I read that link you sent about Andrea Williams with attention. Her hatred and bigotry is out of control. The message that comes from her raving is that she wants to visit condign punishment on gays. But why? What so disturbs her?

    The answer just has to lie in a disturbed psyche. The very existence of gays threatens something exceeding fragile inside her. The result is that discussion or looking at the facts, whatever they show, is far too threatening. The decision has been made by her and she must turn the world to her way of thinking.

    What is extraordinary, and fair play to the senior Christians who have spoken out against her rants, is that she holds a senior position in the C. of E. In a world being overwhelmed by problems, over population and the Muslim violence being amongst them, she is obsessed about gay relationships.

  16. Barry Duke says:

    While on the subject of demented Christians, I see our old arch-enemy Hob Button is rubbing his hands with glee over the prospect of Peter O’Toole spending eternity in “Hell”: http://bobhutton1.blogspot.com.es/2013/12/another-atheist-now-knows-there-is-god.html

  17. remigius says:

    AIDS/HIV is totally preventable. All it takes is awareness, and a willingness, using education and proven scientific methodology, to halt its spread and better the lives of those whom it seeks to destroy.

    Religion is totally preventable. All it takes is awareness, and a willingness, using education and proven scientific methodology, to halt its spread and better the lives of those whom it seeks to destroy.

    See what I did there?

  18. charlie says:

    These vile xtians are equally as bad as the followers of (not so) mighty Mo and their religion of “peace” BS. They are causing people to die when there is medicines and treatments that can let them live a fairly decent life. Once again, the nasty fool xtians are off killing for Jeebus. I detest and despise them. I refuse to hate anybody or anything, too negative and takes way too much time to do correctly. Much better to despise and detest their vile religions.

  19. Angela_K says:

    You may have heard about Phil Robertson of Duck Dynasty fame, this inbred redneck xtain has been suspended from this TV series for hate speech, here he is in action:-

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xyP_2fS1A04&feature=player_embedded

    And christian loon Sarah Palin is supporting him!

  20. Matt+Westwood says:

    It’s all about increasing living space for your own kind. On the one hand “one’s own kind” are those who believe in the same tribal totem, on the other hand “one’s own kind” are those continent enough not to live the sort of lifestyle that allows you to catch AIDS. (The fact that one’s spouse may be the one infected is just your tough shit, darlin’.)

  21. Brian Jordan says:

    I’m a bit puzzled as to precisely how evil they are being.

    The pastor then confiscated her meds and set them on fire. Afterwards, she was sent to a clinic for a “test” that confirmed she was HIV-free.

    “I was upbeat, but after two weeks I started falling sick,” Lavonga is quoted as saying. “When I was tested, the virus was still in me and had multiplied since I was not taking the drugs.

    Are they picking people in remission and claiming that their mumbo-jumbo, not the retrovirals, is the reason then letting them rot, or are they being even worse and subjecting them to a fake test that says they’re in remission when they’re not and a real test would have told them so?

  22. Stephen Mynett says:

    @Briab Jordan, they are totally evil. There is no cure for HIV, it can only be controlled. Any test that says the person is HIV negative must be a fraud unless they never had HIV to start with.

  23. Stephen Mynett says:

    Sorry Brian, just spotted the typo on your name, I usually manage half a doyen words before making a mess of things.

  24. Robster says:

    Another glowing example of religion at work. Jeesus….

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  27. anonymous says:

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  28. Leo Jennifer says:

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  29. Drudospellhome Inegbenoise says:

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  30. Joy Charles says:

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  31. Joy Charles says:

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  32. Lawrence Jerry says:

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  33. HIV says:

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  34. get cured says:

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