KENYA: Apostolic Nuncio Urges Church to Focus on Missionary Role

NAIROBI, JULY 26, 2019 (CISA)-Archbishop Hurbetus Van Megen, the Apostolic Nuncio to Kenya and South Sudan has urged the Church in Kenya to focus on it’s missionary role  of spreading the gospel, rather than focusing on structures of the Church.

“The Catholic Church is very structuralized, our church buildings, our groups and meetings.  We focus  a lot on how  to finance  and keep  them going and in so doing forget  about the missionary aspect of the Church…you must go out of your house, out of your known and established  structures  and announce the good news,” he said.

The Apostolic Nuncio was speaking to Diocesan Patoral Coordinators, Rectors and Pontifical Mission Societies Coordinators on July 18 at Dimesse Sisters Retreat Centre in Nairobi, where he lamented that most Catholics perceive missionary work to be the preserve of missionary congregations.

“Let us avoid having this distinction of a parish priest  and a missionary priest,of a parish priest being there  to keep the parish together and the missionary priest  going out to  spread the good news.Everybody has a call to be  a missionary.The priests,religious and lay men and women,” he emphasized.

He further encouraged the Church in Africa, and Asia to open up the Church to local cultures so as to enrich it, at a time when it is faced by secularism and influence of negative western cultures.

“In a society where we all accept God, one is able to accept the differences that exist in our families and society. Despite our differences, we remain as brothers and sisters of the same father.  In Christianity, when we accept our differences, there is no culture more superior than the other,” he noted.

The event was organized by the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops Pontifical Mission Societies (PMS) National office, and was graced by former AMECEA Secretary General Very Rev. Ferdinand Lugonzo and attended by around 50 participants from Catholic Dioceses in Kenya.