1. Brief history of beginning of mission in Kenya.

The Clerics Regular Minor CRM) , commonly known as the Adorno Fathers, or Pères (or Padri) Caracciolini in French and Italian countries, are a religious Order of priests and brothers founded by St. Francis Caracciolo, Venerable John Augustine Adorno and Fabrizio Caracciolo in 1588. Belonging to the family of Clerics Regular, they desired to sanctify themselves and the People of God by imitating in their lives the Paschal Mystery of Christ.

The Clerics Regular Minor (CRM) opened their mission in Kenya, specifically in the archdiocese of Nairobi on 10th august 2005 when Fr. Paolo Di Nardo and four Brothers of simple profession (Br. Basile Mulimbwa; Br. Jean-Baptiste Kambere; Br. Jean Ndimubanzi and Bro. Georges Iyamuremye) came to live with Franciscan Friars Capuchins in their compound but using different flats in Bogani Road, at Karen-Nairobi. However, as no mission has ever been easy in the beginning, this new community in the new land faced some challenges in their daily mission. They were called by some surrounding people “The Capuchins from Congo” since all of them came from Democratic Republic of Congo. And other challenges were due to local languages, customs, cultures, ect. which were almost new for all of them. In fact, the choice of Capuchin apartment was due to the closeness to the school of theology, Tangaza College, (a branch of Catholic University of Eastern Africa: CUEA) where our students would be going for theology studies.

However, a year later, after the General Chapter in Rome, it was decided that the Novitiate should shift from Goma (D.R.Congo) to Nairobi, and, at the same time, a new Rector of theology in Nairobi was been elected, Fr. Gilbert Gato who was/is also the Novice’s master while Fr. Paolo Di Nardo was elected superior of Nyamilima’s community (in D.R.C.).

Indeed, on 25th august 2006, the new team reached Nairobi and therefore, the community became big in number: 13 members among them 2 formators (Fr. Gilbert Gato and Fr. Jonas Masimengo); Brother Emmanuel Kakule was in his pastoral year as trainee; 2 coadjutor Brothers (Br. Basile Mulimbwa and Br. Pacifique Murhula); 4 brothers as theologians (Br. Jean-Baptiste Kambere, Br. Jean Ndimubanzi, Br. Georges Iyamuremye and Br. Florent Kasai); and finally 4 Novices (Amédée Misako, Romuald Adili, Richard Furaha and Faustin Nambaje).

However, to respond to different challenges due to the place and time, the Clerics Regular Minor have started the procedure for their own formation house around Tangaza College. And this took really long process because of rules of Kenyan government. Furthermore, after three full years, the community shifted from Capuchin’s compound to Dominican’s compound, in Masai Lane- Karen/Nairobi. They stayed there for one year before they come to live in their own formation house which was been built in Bogani East-Road, at Karen/Nairobi, on 1st June 2009 at the eve of the feast of our Founder saint Francis Caracciolo which is celebrated every 4th of June. Now the community is composed by 3 priests (Fr. Gilbert Gato, Fr. Emmanuel Kakule, Fr. Donatus Kasereka), one deacon, 15 seminarians in formation as novices and theologians.

2. Solemn Profession of Br. Jean-Baptiste Kambere.

The Eucharistic celebration of this Solemn Profession took place inside the CRM’s plot, in Bogani Road East/Nairobi and was presided by Most Rev. Fr. Raphael Mandolesi, Superior General of Clerics Regular Minor on 2nd February 2010, in occasion of the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord in the Temple, the day of Light from Jesus Christ who comes to enlighten us through his Words and in special way, through the Eucharist.

In his introductory word, Fr. General showed that this Feast of the Presentation of the Lord in the Temple has meaning to the event of the day, Solemn Profession, in sense that Christ, the Light of the world who enlightens the whole world, gives himself to the Lord, to redeem human kind. And Br. Jean-Baptiste did not accept to live in darkness. He chose Christ as the goal of his life so that he might be enlightened by him, loved by him and love him. It is clear that if we have Christ in our life, everything will be alright although our weaknesses. Therefore, we have to accept Christ as the Light of our life; and Jean-Baptiste has accepted Christ as the Light of his life; he chose his better part that pleases him through the vows of Poverty, Chastity, Obedience and Humility. And this choice can bring doubt to human people nowadays. Some can think that the man is out of mind because the way of living of today is very different from the way of living of consecrated people.

Moreover, in his homily, Fr. General explained the meaning of the four vows that Br. Jean-Baptiste will going to commit for all his life.

By vow of Poverty, he said, Jean-Baptiste will renounce to the earthly happiness so that he might serve God without any hitch; to proclaim the Good news freely and to share his life with those who are discriminated. And this vow of Poverty helps all Caracciolini religious to put in common their goods like the first Christian community. This was sign of their faith.

By vow of Chastity, Fr. General underlined that today many people are slave of bodily happiness; they misuse their bodies and take the body of other as instrument that can help them to enjoy their lives.

By the vow of Obedience, Jean-Baptiste puts his will into God’s hands so that he might look and accomplish God’s will by obeying himself to God, to Church authorities and in special way, to the authorities of the Clerics Regular Minor.

Then Fr. General explained that apart from the three vows, the Clerics Regular Minor have one more vow for their own: “Not to Seek Ecclesiastical Dignities neither in the Church nor within the Order” which is understood in term of Humility. Here Fr. General gave the example of our Founder, Saint Francis Caracciolo who renounced to all authorities of this world chose to remain a humble servant of God by suggesting all his followers to imitate his example. Therefore, by the vow of humility, Jean-Baptiste wants to fulfill Christ’s message which says that “I did not come to be served but to serve all human kind”.

Moreover, at the end of his homily, Fr. General gave to Br. Jean-Baptiste some skills that will help him to be faithful to these four oaths. To be faithful to: the Prayer; the Eucharist; the Words of God that lead our life; and finally he suggested him two stars which shine in our life: a) Virgin Mary who is able to say “I am the servant of the Lord, let it be done to me as you have said”. b) Saint Francis Caracciolo, Man of prayer from above, Man able to remain with God all the night by adoring him through the holy Eucharist, praying him, and during the day, taking care of those who are in need.

Furthermore, before the end of celebration, the new solemn professed, expressed his different gratitude to all those who assisted him in different ways to reach this level, but a special thanks for the Franciscan Friars Capuchins who welcomed them for the first time in the new land of Nairobi. And thanks to the Congolese community living in Nairobi, who chanted the mass which was in Swahili. After that, Fr. Gilbert Gato, the local superior, expressed also his words of thanksgiving. Fr. Guiseppe Lucarelli, who came for the first time in Africa, expressed also his feelings that he stills happy with his choice after fifty years of his priesthood, but also happy to visit Africa for the first time and to experience African realities, especially African beauty. “L’Africa è stupenda e meravigliosa” he concluded. At last, Fr. General concluded the celebration by showing that the vocation of Jean-Baptiste has grown into his presence. So his joy is greater because he can see the fruit today.

3. Diaconate Ordination and Blessing of the Formation house.

Four days after his solemn profession, Br. Jean-Baptiste was ordained deacon by his Eminence John Cardinal Njue, the Archbishop of Archdiocese of Nairobi on 6th February 2010 at Saint John the Evangelist Parish which belongs to Spiritan’s Order, at Langata-Karen/Nairobi. With 24 co-celebrants, among them 6 CRM’s Fathers, the ordination was animated by the one of the parish’s choirs and supported by CWA (Catholic Women Association) of the same parish.

In his homily, the cardinal reminded all Christian faithful who were present, especially all priests, to understand deeply their identity that was given by God so that it might produce good fruits. And to Br. Jean-Baptiste, the Cardinal reminded him his different steps training, from the time of his primary school to his diaconate ordination. Then he challenged his mind by recalling indirectly whatever he has done somewhere in this world. But as successor of the Apostles, said the cardinal, “I am going to lay my hands on you, I ask you to take this sign very serious. If you carry your mission as God has given it to you, so you must not be afraid. As Jesus promised his disciples: Do not be afraid, I am always with you”.

Moreover, addressing to Fr. General, the cardinal emphasized that the CRM’s Order has to remain in full communion with the new deacon, Jean-Baptiste, wherever he will be sent. And this closeness with the entire congregation will help him to be a man of prayer. Then the Cardinal ended his homily by inviting the new deacon to seal his new identity in his heart so that he might remember it at anytime his new duties.

However, before the end of Eucharistic celebration, Fr. General thanked his Eminence John Cardinal Njue for having availed himself to ordain our Brother and he invited him to visit some of our communities in Rome once he travels to Italy. Then, he strengthened the new deacon to go forward, and not to be like a wife who, during the sorrowful moments, she would like to run away from her family.

Furthermore, after the diaconate ordination, his Eminence John Cardinal Njue went to bless the new formation house built in Bogani East Road/Karen, a place where people will be accompanied. His Eminence took the opportunity to underline that “Religious formation house is a nursery where they are formed the ministries of the Church. May this house be a school of prayer, of the divine knowledge”, he prayed. Assisted by Fr. General, Fr. Gilbert Gato (the local superior) and by Cornelius (the architect), the Cardinal cut the ribbon and declared that the new Formation House is opened. At last, this Formation House was announced by local superior to be under the patronage of Saint Francis Caracciolo, our Founder.



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