Kenyan Bishop Encourages Devotion to St. Joseph amid “lives’ crises”, Cautions against “fear of responsibilities”

Bishop David Kamau Ng’ang’a addressing over 15,000 Catholic Men Association (CMA) members drawn from the 15 Deaneries of Nairobi Archdiocese at the grounds of St. Joseph’s Technical College Kamulu. Credit: Catholic Archdiocese Nairobi (ADN)

A Catholic Bishop in Kenya has encouraged devotion to St. Joseph, who he said overcame multiple crises by his trust in God.

In his March 16 homily in anticipation of Tuesday, March 19 Solemnity of St. Joseph, spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Bishop David Kamau Ng’ang’a highlighted the crises St. Joseph overcame, adding that his intercessions can help believers overcome their respective “lives’ crises”.

From the scriptures, Bishop Kamau said, “very little is known about St. Joseph and the little that we know, we find St. Joseph is always in crisis.”

Credit: Catholic Archdiocese Nairobi (ADN)

The pregnancy of Mary was one of the crises St. Joseph had to deal with, the Auxiliary Bishop of the Catholic Archdiocese of Nairobi noted at the event that had over 15,000 Catholic Men Association (CMA) members drawn from the 15 Deaneries of the Kenyan Metropolitan See in attendance.


He described the situation that St. Joseph found himself in at the time as “a very serious crisis”, and referring to the Gospel Reading of the Solemnity, added, “And being a righteous man, he decided to quietly leave Mary without embarrassing her.”

Joseph, Bishop Kamau went on to say, “trusted God and God showed him the way.”

Credit: Catholic Archdiocese Nairobi (ADN)

The Kenyan Catholic Church leader, who was presiding over Holy Mass to mark the Solemnity of the Patron Saint of CMA of Nairobi Archdiocese recounted Joseph’s flight into Egypt alongside the child Jesus and the Blessed Virgin Mary as another crisis in the life of the Patron Saint of the universal Church.

“Joseph was told to wake up, carry his belongings, his spouse Mary and child Jesus and protect them. Here Joseph was in Crisis,” he recalled during the March 16 event that was held at the grounds of St. Joseph’s Technical College, a project CMA in Nairobi Archdiocese at Kamulu.

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St. Joseph, Bishop Kamau continued, “had been assured that God will be with him; but then there he was, faced with the challenge of becoming a refugee. That was a very serious crisis for Joseph, but he trusted God and God showed him the way.”

Credit: Catholic Archdiocese Nairobi (ADN)

The Auxiliary Bishop, who presided over the commissioning of 847 new CMA members narrated the incident of the inadvertent three-day separation of 12-year-old Jesus from his parents when they had visited the temple in Jerusalem, describing it as another crisis in the life of St. Joseph.

“The third crisis is when Jesus got lost in the temple. They went to Jerusalem for celebrations and when they were coming back, Joseph thought that Jesus was with his mum, while Mary on the other hand thought the child was with Joseph,” he recalled.

Not being able to locate Jesus for three days “was a crisis and they had to struggle and look for him until they found him in the temple,” Bishop Kamau said.


Credit: Catholic Archdiocese Nairobi (ADN)

“What I’m saying is that Joseph was a man in crisis in his family life, but trusting in God helped him overcome the crisis,” the Auxiliary Bishop of Nairobi Archdiocese since his Episcopal Consecration in March 2000 reiterated.

He challenged the CMA members of Nairobi Archdiocese to emulate St. Joseph in being responsible in their respective families. 

“Fear of responsibilities”, Bishop Kamau said, is one the major challenges “we have today with our men and with our young people. Some fear the family responsibilities; they do not want to get married, and of course the same for women.”

Credit: Catholic Archdiocese Nairobi (ADN)

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He compared taking up parental and family responsibilities as bearing one’s cross, and added, “We cannot build the Church without families; there is no way you can get a ‘crossless’ family.”

“Let us pray, as we celebrate the feast of St. Joseph, that just as St. Joseph carried the cross of the family, we may also carry the same cross in honour of the family, and also for the church,” he said. 

The 69-year-old Kenyan Catholic Church leader reiterated, “We cannot have a Church without the cross. Wherever you go, there will always be a cross.”

Credit: Catholic Archdiocese Nairobi (ADN)

He called upon the CMA members to seek the will of God amid life’s challenges, looking upon Jesus Christ for inspiration. 

“When Jesus was at Gethsemane, he prayed, ‘Lord God, if you want, take this cup away from me’; and then He followed with, ‘Not as I will, but as you will.’ That means that, the devil tempted Jesus again, but Jesus had to make a decision to go for the will of God,” said Bishop Kamau.

Therefore, he continued, “Jesus went through problems and suffering like we do, and just as he managed to go through them, then we also, journeying with him, can overcome all the issues and crises in our lives.”

Credit: Catholic Archdiocese Nairobi (ADN)

“Let us dedicate ourselves to St. Joseph,” Bishop Kamau said.

As the Servant of God dedicated our Archdiocese to St. Joseph, “we too will go through lives’ crises if we follow in the footsteps of St. Joseph,” he further said referring to Kenya’s first Cardinal, the Servant of God, Maurice Michael Cardinal Otunga, who was the pioneer Kenyan-born Archbishop of Nairobi.

Irene Wambui contributed to the writing of this story

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