By Francis Njuguna
Catholics in Kenya continue to embrace the virtues of Maurice Michael Cardinal Otunga whose life is currently being studied with the aim to canonize him.
On 8 November, 2019, hundreds of Catholics converged at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA), Langata Campus, Nairobi, Kenya to mark the Cardinal Otunga Memorial Scholarship Fundraising Day. The day was marked with the celebration of the Eucharist, a panel discussion and a fundraising exercise. The day was marked under the theme: Positive Change, Human Dignity and Ethical Justice: Lessons from SOG Maurice Cardinal Otunga. The mass was presided over by Rev. Stephen Mbugua Ngari, the University’s Vice Chancellor. He was assisted by Rev. Simon Ng’ang’a, Procurator/Administrator of the Archdiocese of Nairobi and Rev. Celestino Bundi, current Chairman of the Central Committee of Cardinal Otunga Beatification Process.
The mass was followed by a panel discussion led by Ng’ang’a and included Hon. George Muhoho, formerly of the Kenya Airports Authority. Speaker after speaker commended Cardinal Otunga for his exemplary pastoral life. Each of the speakers urged the congregation to ensure that they emulated the life of the cardinal. “He lived a simple life, worth to be emulated. He was down to earth in his pastoral commitment and he always exercised humility as he went about his pastoral life,” emphasized Ng’ang’a.
The guest of honor, who assisted in the fund raising exercise, was the Nyandarua, Kenya County Council Governor, Francis Thuita Kimemia. He urged the Catholics to ensure that they supported the current cause on the cardinal’s life with aims to canonize him. “This is a cause we as Catholics can hardly afford not to support,” he emphasized.
On his part, Bundi gave a brief update on the current beatification process on the life of Cardinal Otunga. “The process is on the verge of writing a biography on the life of the cardinal that is necessary before the process enters its Second Phase, otherwise referred to as the Roman Phase. He called on the Catholics and people of goodwill to support the process in various aspects through prayers and finance.
Kimemia helped to raise over Kenya SHs. 3 million. The raised amount will go towards assisting the poor students currently studying at the university. “By participating in this fund-raising exercise, you are simply furthering our beloved Cardinal Otunga’s virtue of sharing resources with the poor in our midst,” he emphasized. He recalled that one of the virtues of our beloved Cardinal Otunga was his commitment to sharing resources with the poor and the needy.
Text/ Francis Njuguna