KENYA: Renew the bond of Ecumenism, Archbishop Urges Christians

NAIROBI, JANUARY 20, 2015 (CISA) – Archbishop Peter Kairo of the Catholic Archdiocese of Nyeri has invited Christians to renew their bond of communion in service to the Church.

In a statement sent to CISA, to mark the opening of the annual week of prayer for Christian unity, Archbishop Kairo urged Christians to “live with legitimate differences while crying out for solidarity and fellowship among them.”

“The theme for the occasion is ‘give me to drink’ so the Lord is inviting us (Christians) to offer water to whoever arrives and to embrace one another in order to live our Church’s mission: That His love may transform us into a source of living waters to enjoy the fruits of that genuine unity we all yearn for,” said Archbishop Kairo of the Kenya Catholic Bishops’ Conference (KCCB), Commission on Ecumenism.

According to Archbishop Kairo, the annual Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2015 is meant to guide all ecumenical initiatives throughout the year.

“The resource material for this year’s Week of Prayer for Christian Unity has been prepared by the National Council of Christian Churches in Brazil in the context of their very religious country. Kenya faces challenges of market-driven Christianity, emergence of militia groups, violence and radicalization still experienced in some of the areas,’’ Archbishop Kairo added.

Kenya’s Ecumenism National Executive Secretary at the Bishops’ conference, Fr Charles Odira Kwanya outlining the programme for the Week of Christian Unity, said that this traditional week was proposed in 1908 by Fr Paul Wattson (co-founder of the Graymoor Franciscan Friars) to cover the Protestant variant of the ancient Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter on January 18 and concluding with the Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul on January 25.

Elsewhere, the Nairobi Ecumenical Group and the Mustard Seed Ecumenical Network (MUSEN) composed mainly of Greek Orthodox and Coptic Orthodox Churches and the Catholic Parish of the Consolata Shrine has organized a series of meetings in different Churches in Nairobi in line with the annual week of prayer.

According to Joseph Kabutha the Events coordinator at the Consolata Shrine, there are sarongs placed at the altar to symbolize different churches in the Nairobi diocese.

The Week of prayer For Christian unity prayer service will be held in South B at Our Lady Queen of Peace parish in Nairobi.

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