A popular Kenyan evangelist has opened up about her attraction to women and said that God created her to be gay.
Jacinta Nzilani spoke to a local radio station about her 25-year marriage to a man despite knowing that she was attracted to women right from when she was 16-year-old.
She said: “When I was 16 I realised that I was attracted to women more than men. It is not a habit, it is something that is inside me.”
When she was 18, she decided to join a convent and become a nun, but in the first few days, she was inappropriately touched by a priest.
She left and returned home, but soon after was “married off to a man” almost twice her age. She stayed married to her husband for 25 years and had three children before he passed away 11 years ago.
Nzilani said, “Marriage was tough and I was not interested in sex. Whenever we got intimate it was by force and I hated it.
“My husband succumbed to cancer in 2008 after a 25-year marriage and this affected me. My in-laws turned against me and some even beat me up saying I had brought a curse on their family.”
Although Nzilani was already a pastor, when her true sexuality was revealed, most of the members of her church left and she was forced to start afresh.
She added: “I started a programme where I interacted with women and tried to understand them. A few years later I had a relationship with one of the women.”
The relationship didn’t last, and a few years later she met her current partner, who is also an evangelist.
“She is mature and loving. We do what couples do… My children know about it and they have accepted me. I was created this way”, she said.
Nzilani said she believes that God’s love is unconditional, regardless of sexual orientation.
Earlier this year, Kenya’s High Court ruled to uphold a colonial-era law that criminalised “sodomy”.