From 8th – 12th November 2021, we the confreres of the Congregation of the Mission Kenya Region had our annual retreat at Mary Mother of God National Shrine in Subukia -Nakuru County. It was in deed a wonderful moment coming together to pray for our region and also to listen to what God is telling us in this process of transition. As we were beginning this retreat, we received words of encouragement from our Provincial Very. Rev. Fr. Patrick Mc Davitt, CM and the Assistant Provincial Fr. Thomas Esselman, CM. They both invited us on these days of retreat to continue praying, for one another and most importantly for the ongoing transition processes that will eventual lead to Kenya becoming a Vice Province. They promised to be with us in prayer during these days of prayer.
In continuing with the retreat, our retreat Direct Fr. Francis Gerald Mathenge from the Arch Diocese of Nyeri, in his reflection emphasized on Integrity, purity of heart and mind, and honesty as the true identity of priestly and religious life. He went on to state that the roots to integrity, purity and honesty in a priest life are:
- Commitment to personal prayer; By committing ourselves to personal pray we are able to meet with God and open ourselves to him for refilling.
- Commitment to community prayer and liturgy of the Hour. When we pray together we will be able to eliminate divisions among brothers and live a life of communion.
- Holding and supporting each other as brothers no matter the challenges we face in the mission. This will help us to grow and to prosper as a community.
- Having organize ministry and apostolates; Organized apostolates will always lead to organized hearts, organized minds and eventual organized community.
- Living a life of respect and obedience to the Voice of God who called us. This will make us remain steadfast to the mission.
- And lastly loving the sacrament of confession and making it part of our daily life.
We concluded our retreat by the following words; “The chief duty of a priest and religious person is to pray, from that other things will flow. Start your day with prayer and end it with prayer.”
Thanks to Fr. Francis Gerald Mathenge for inspiring us these few days.