Sister Monicah Mugure Ng’ang’a
In our lifetimes, we are gifted with a limited number of truly “landmark moments.” These moments often start small, like when on October 25th, 1866, the first three CCVI founding sisters (Sister Mary Blandine Mathelin, Sister Mary Joseph Roussin, and Sister Mary Ange Escude) set foot in Galveston, Texas. But then, with time and through God’s grace, these “small landmarks” grew both in influence & significance.
There is that perfect landmark moment when we look back and thank God for all that has been. That moment and the dedication & sacrifices which followed should be celebrated to its fullest. That was the case in Kenya when the Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word gathered together at St. Catherine Convent grounds, Karen, Nairobi to thank God for His fidelity and unfailing love for the past 150 years since the foundation of our Congregation and for the Diamond Jubilee of Sister Mary Tobin.
The day was of such significance that families and friends of the CCVI Sisters traveled from all over Kenya to congratulate, celebrate with and share the memories of that day. The invited guests of honor included: The Managing Director and the Director of Finance, Administration & Strategy from CORAT Africa, representatives from NIC Bank, Raptim Humanitarian Travel, Chemchemi Institute, Administrative Chief Karen Area, Administration Police Karen Area, Religious Superiors Representatives, Ms. Majda Povoden-Nginja, Principal Architect, Maya Plan; Valji Karsan Contractor, Construction Company representative; and the St. John the Evangelist Parish Council representative among others. The presence of so many friends was not only an affirmation of how blessed the CCVI Sisters are, but it was also a testimony of the many lives that have been touched and nourished by the CCVI Charism over the years which is summarized in the following statements: “Our Lord Jesus Christ, suffering in the persons of a multitude of sick and infirm of every kind, seeks relief at your hands.” Bishop Claude Marie Dubuis, our Founder and the challenge of Mother Jeanne Chezard de Matel to be bearers of the “Gospel of Love.” There is a saying that goes, “To love and be loved is to feel the sun from both sides.” This is the warmth we all experienced as we celebrated the 150th anniversary of our foundation.
The day started with a beautiful Eucharistic cerebration with Fr. Raphael Mururu Baing’Oni from Sr. Mary’s Seminary, Molo as the main celebrant and five other Priests co-celebrating with him and the assistance of a Deacon. The choir from St. Mary’s Rongai Parish and the CCVI aspirants crowned the Mass celebration with beautiful music and liturgical dance. After the Eucharistic Celebration, the Sisters hosted a festive meal at St. Bakhita Dining Hall. The place was magnificently decorated to fit the occasion. The food was delicious; we truly enjoyed it, thanks to a professional catering service company that helped prepare it. The climax of the meal was the cutting and sharing of the 150 years’ cake. It was a sign of our togetherness and commitment to continue with God’s mission which has been entrusted to each one of us. As we move forward
“Serving with Gladness,” we thank God for being with us as a congregation for 150 years! And, as we look into the future the words of the prophet Jeremiah echoes in our hearts; “For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future full of hope.” (Jer. 29: 11).
Praised be the Incarnate Word!