Tuesday, December 20, 2011

FOURTH SUNDAY OF ADVENT

“There is no limit to the power of a good woman”. R.H. Benson

2 Sam 7:1-5-8:11:16. David wants to build a house for God. But instead God promises to build an everlasting dynasty for him.

Rom 16:25-27. God’s plan of salvation for Jews and gentiles has to fulfillment in Christ

Luke 1:26-38. God’s promise to David was fulfilled in Jesus.

· When the birth of a child nears, the whole attention is given to the mother.
· The focus is on Mary, the will of the Father to be done and will have to help us.
· Today many people- feel happy to do things that they think or matter
- No commitments
- No answer to the questions asked
- No one whose needs tie you down
Mary did say – sorry, but I have my own plans- I want to do my own things.
- It is not what I want, but what God wants is what matters
- Life imposes a lot of duties on us
- We may never see the fullness and meaning of what we do. (Boy with old woman) completely hidden from us.
GOSPEL
v To say yes, you may never know what you are committing yourself to.
v Mary did not know that every door could be closed in front of her- she would be a refugee in the foreign land- 33 years later that her son would be executed like a criminal- she never said yes once but a continuous yes in her life.
v We say yes to our responsibilities/commitments – a leap in the dark- we do not know the implications of what we are undertaking.
v Mary asked a question- how can this happen? Faith is not blind. Beyond reason but not against it- let God be God.
v Bow to the mystery
Christmas Tree- nice, beautiful, child not crying, no dirt (1st pp)- not real, not true, its false, wrong picture, 2nd pp changes, colored Jesus, dirt, background slums, shanties etc.

First Xmas was full of uncertainty, hurry, disappointment and fear, no picnic for Joseph and Mary
- Long journey, arrived at Bethlehem poor, unknown, without influence of any kind, they couldn’t get accommodation- at birth, no Dr. or Nurse to stand by
- It’s easy to move away from poverty of original crib.

Resp
Come Lord Jesus
Come into our hearts R
Come into our homes R
Come to those who are lonely R
Come to those who are fearful R
Come to those who are sick R
Come to those who are poor R
Come to those who are grieving R
Come to those who have faith R
Come to those who have no hope R
Come to those who have no love R
Come to those who are victims of violence R
Come to those with the grip of addiction R
Come to us in our needs of Christmas R


“He who takes the child by the hand takes mother by heart”- Danish proverb

Saturday, December 17, 2011

PERSONAL LETTER TO MR. KWAMCHETSI

OPEN LETTER TO MR. KWACHETSI MAKOKHA
17th /12/2011
Dear Mr. Kwamchetsi,

Greetings and warm regards for the season. I am an ardent reader of your articles but this one entitled “Open letter to New ICC Chief Prosecutor” Ms fatou Bensouda left me with some disturbing questions and I said I should write a few lines to you as a sign of food for thought.
I am a student at the Catholic University doing my mastery in Pastoral Theology and also a pastoral agent in qualitative Evangelization in AMECEA region.
Your letter to the ICC Prosecutor sounded to me as personal, of course a letter has a personal idea, tone and it is sometimes rouses different emotions, thoughts, desires depending on who is writing and to whom it is written to. You expressed your your free hand of writing or can we say tying the thoughts which you shared with us in this Saturday's Daily Nation dated 17/12/2011.
Some points I would like we reflect together and I do believe in the whole big picture of reality. Sometimes you will never know where you are until someone asks you a question or shares about the issues raised.

1. Personal description can be done but to some extent.When it remains on physical level then it is not integral. Your description of Ms Fatou Bensouda could go beyond physical to intellectual, spiritual, and other qualities which to me I felt you didn’t mention. Let me think may be it was due to your angle of thought and emphasis, or depending on where your stand is in the matter.
2. You are a learned and schooled personality of this country but if I find myself thinking that you ascribe to a certain school of thought of “I am an African and I need to be treated as an African” that can make me uneasy to some extent. Ms .Fatou I do believe she is entitled to her views which you and I are called upon to respect and engage her in reverential dialogue.
3. Men and in this case I mean African men have ruled and mismanaged African continent and I know you know them who have poorly mismanaged African resources, intellegentia, and the whole concept of Africa as a Family set up. Ms. Fatou should not be asked to perform miracles which you yourself find hard to tackle. The poor woman has not even entered into office as prosecutor but we are piling up many demands. I think we need to give her time.
4. We find ourselves looking outside of this country and seeing and thinking why can’t she do this and that about others (Asia, America, Europe) while we ourselves are burning with deep hatred of each other in this country, people still in IDP Camps, Corruption left, right and centre. Before Ms. Fatou sorts us let us put our house in order. Our mother Wangari Maathaai insisted on thinking internally and acting locally but that should not mean that we cannot be helped when in difficulties or faced with enormous challenges. “Mgeni aje mwenyeji apone”. We have compromised our prophetic voices; we have lost the trend of thought that even we do not know who is who? Everyone is talking and no one is listening to the other. Surely what will Obama’s investigation benefit Kenyans in IDP camp, our corruption, negative ethnicity. Just food for thought.
5. You say that Africans solved their challenges by sitting under trees but the question is; where are the trees to sit under?, land grabbing, deforestation, watelands encroached, the ecology interfered with. B) Breaking cola nut, I think what is important is breaking the Kenyans hearts which have turned out to be harder than the cola nut. C) Drink beer- with the kumikumi killing people, rendering men impotent and wasted, family break up due to the love of the bottle. Drinking should not be glorified today as African virtue/value, it has no value today dear Mr. kwamchetsi.
6. You mentioned about compensation of the lost life. Who has compensated the lives lost in 1992, 1997, 2007 in this country. Its up to us to ask ourselves deeply from the bottom of our hearts and souls what happened? We all wanted ICC to help us what has changed that we are turning against the Dr. who gave us the medication. It is not Ms. Fatou’s business but if we can’t reflect she will help us meditate according to the ICC smart qualitative objectives of Rome Statute.
These are some of the disturbing thoughts which I wanted to share with you and I do hope we can think towards making Kenya to be truly Kenyan and truly INCHI YETU. We can’t afford to think one think, write this and act differently from our beingness. We are opinion leaders of this country and we need to address our issues than looking out of what is not happening out there. We have very burning issues which me and you can sit down and say, what we can do and whom can we approach to help us? than feel pride in ourselves is too much ignorance. Our people are dying for lack of knowledge and we just can’t afford to waste time being too rhetoric.

Yours faithfully

Padre Joseph M. Nyamunga- CUEA

ID. No. MA/PT -1019830

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

THIRD SUNDAY OF ADVENT – B

Readings: Isaiah 61:1-2, 10-11; Psalm: Luke 1:46-50, 53-54; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24; John 1:6-8, 19-28

“Happiness is not a matter of events; it depends upon the tides of the mind” – Alice Meynell

THEME OF THE READINGS

Rejoice because the Lord is near: the theme permeates the entire liturgy of this Sunday. It is not a question of a superficial happiness or a passing excitement “because Christmas is coming”, but of the joy of salvation (Opening Prayer). Salvation that is glad tidings for “all the people” (Luke 2:16) but especially for the poor and lowly (First Reading and Psalm). The mission of the servants of the Saviour is to prepare the way (Second Readingand Gospel).
DOCTRINAL MESSAGE-
Christian joy. A part of our tired post-Christian society (which includes, or at least deeply affects, many of us who still think of ourselves as Christians) desperately looks for happiness in all the wrong places. It tends to confuse happiness with fame, fun and pleasure; but these do not generate joy, which is a signpost of true happiness. “Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the opportunities for pleasure, but it has great difficulty in generating joy. For joy comes from another source. It is spiritual.” (Paul VI, Gaudete in Domino). Others seem to believe that if only we could get the right kind of political system, or the right people implementing the proper policies, or more advances of medical science, then all would be well. This is salvation, according to the world.
Christian identity. The poor or lowly to whom the good news is announced have a particular readiness for salvation, not because they have nothing in the bank or have no vote, but because they trust in no human power for salvation –as those who have money or power are more readily tempted to do, (Mark 10:25) – but only in God. Their lack of human means opens them to a true appreciation of their essential powerlessness in the eyes of God. That is why they are prime candidates for the glad tidings of the gospel. Mary of Nazareth “stands out among the poor and humble of the Lord” (CCC 489). She thinks of herself as simply his maidservant, while simultaneously recognizing the wonderful things he has worked in her. This God-given self-awareness fills her with joy (Luke 1:38.47-49). John the Baptist too has a clear idea of his identity, rooted in the word of God. He is not any of the things the world thinks of him, however flattering. He knows who he is (a voice in the desert) and what God has sent him to do (prepare the way). He knows he does not exist for himself, but for another, whom he is happy to acknowledge as infinitely superior.
Christian salvation. As noted above, in our society people seek happiness rather than salvation. It is true, according to today’s liturgy, that joy, salvation and a more just and human world are somehow interconnected. We learned in math class that the order of the factors does not alter the product. But the Christian mystery does not obey the laws of mathematics: it is essential to get the order of the factors right. It is not the pursuit of human happiness and fulfillment, or of social justice, that brings salvation; rather, the salvation that comes from on high, “wrapping us in a mantle of justice”, enables us to be instrumental in bringing about a more just world and to find the joy that no one can take away (John 16:22). Catechesis. Our new life in Christ (CCC 1691-96), and our creation in the image and likeness of God (CCC 1701-09) are key ingredients of our true identity. The surpassing joy called beatitude is our vocation (CCC 1716-24).
PASTORAL APPLICATIONS
Christian mission. We know the formula that the world ignores. Salvation is Jesus Christ. People have given up on Christianity, because they do not know Christ. He is “the One among us whom we do not recognize” (Gospel) and who holds the secret of true joy. The task of the apostle of the new evangelization – and every Christian is an apostle by baptism – is to smooth the way for a rediscovery of Christ. First of all, by making this discovery himself, every day, for only then can he or she share it with others with the conviction of personal experience.
Among the privileged places where he is waiting to meet us, we should think especially of the Eucharist. The Eucharist is precisely a celebration, a time of joy. His face also looks out at us in the person of the poor, and of those long suffering physical or moral imprisonment – even prisons of their own making. If we bring them joy this Christmas, we ourselves will find it.
Who am I? To discover Christ it will also help to discover oneself. Only when we situate ourselves in the truth can we really see and appreciate in the right perspective who Jesus is. The gospel is a marvelous instrument for this, because it is a living book, constantly actualized. When it is read in the Church, it is Christ himself who is speaking (cf. Vat.II, Sacrosanctum Concilium 7). Of course, he no longer directs his words or the words of the other actors in the gospels, to Peter, or John, or Martha, but to those who listen to those words now. Thus the question, “Who are you? What do you say about yourself?” (Gospel) is posed to me today. Am I able to answer it? Have I a clear sense of my identity, deeply rooted in the gospel? For example: that I am a creature, patently insufficient; but that I am also loved by my Creator, with a Father’s love that surpasses my wildest dreams; that I am a sinner, but a saved sinner; that I have been sent: I have a mission in life; that I exist, in his plan, for others, and most of all, for the Other, my brother, who is Christ. Such awareness is the foundation of the lasting joy of salvation.
“Those who wish to sing always find a song.” Swedish proverb

An Open Letter to the Kenyan peace builders initiative...

Dear Sir/Madam,                                                                                            02.01.2019   Ref: An...