The General Superior, Brother Daniel Skala, C.F.X., and the General Councilors Brothers Brian Davis, Lawrence Harvey, Patrick Fumbisha, and Dominique Olondo continued their canonical visitation in September to Kenya and South Sudan. These congregational leaders were warmly welcomed and found a deep sense of brotherhood and thriving Xaverian mission in Nairobi, Bungoma, and Lodwar in Kenya as well as at the new mission at St. Patrick’s Boys Secondary School in Nadapal, South Sudan. In addition to meeting with each Brother, and holding a regional discernment assembly, the Brothers visited the scholastics in Nairobi, the Postulancy, St. Xavier High School, and the Ryken Rescue Center in Bungoma and St. James Minor Seminary in Lodwar. Crossing the border into South Sudan in the middle of the desert to St. Patrick’s, though difficult was a special blessing. The students of Mount Saint Joseph’s in Baltimore held a dress down day in which the proceeds were given to St. Patrick’s and used to purchase much needed textbooks and library books.
In Bungoma, the Brothers toured the new dining hall / multi-purpose center, met with school administrators and reviewed plans for continued development of St. Xavier’s as well as the Ryken Rescue Center. St. Xavier’s has been the recipient of a fundraising appeal by the Louisville community and St. Xavier High School in Kentucky. Money raised helps support tuition and fund several projects.
Drought has been especially hard in the Lodwar desert which has been blamed for food insecurity and high living costs at St. James. However, through the generosity of Friends of Turkana and the O’Toole Foundation in the U.S., a new library was built at St. James.
Before departing, Brother Dan and the Council held a leadership discernment assembly for two days. At the conclusion, a new leadership team for the region was appointed. The new leadership are: Brothers Bernard Wandera Jumah, Daniel Ongeso Ohola, Daniel Owidhi Ssenyomo, and Francis Wambua Mutiso.
Brother Dominque Olondo will continue to be a member of the team as a liaison with the General and Council. Brother Dan expressed his appreciation to the previous leadership team of Brothers Dan Ongeso, Daniel Ssenyomo, and Ken Wangila for their leadership since 2019. Brother Dan also appointed Brother Daniel Ssenyomo to serve as Director of Formation for the postulants at St. Joseph Centre in Bungoma where he will be assisted by Brother Joseph Mbithi.
For the boys and street children at the Ryken Rescue Center in Bungoma, a Christmas tradition brought our Postulants from St. Joseph Centre to extend their usual street ministry of charity to the boys of Bungoma. Together they played outdoor games and sports, shared meals, and provided new clothes. The Brothers in formation took time to talk to the children about making positive life decisions. Students from Kibabii University also joined the outreach initiative.
“Seeing marginalized young people coming together, sharing life, and living in unity regardless of their religion, ethnic background or economic status is one of the many acts only possible through love,” stated Brother Daniel Ssenyomo, Kenya Regional Councilor. “To us the street children show a real image of a loving God who has no boundaries whatsoever. Many of these children come from broken families, some are orphans, and others stay with stepparents and grandparents. What binds them together is poverty that’s deprived them of a chance to live a better life. But as Jesus taught us to love, may we also learn to share. For it is in charity that we fulfill the greatest commandment of them all.”