Members of the Clergy, Religious, Laity and representatives of Church organizations in Kenya have paid glowing tribute to the late Bishop.
To the leadership of Kenya’s Diocese of Maralal, Bishop Ravasi was a “God fearing, humble, peace loving and devout shepherd; a man of impeccable character and heroic virtues who exhibited a cheerful charisma and a strong personality even in sickness and old age.”
In the Friday, October 30 statement seen by ACI Africa, the leadership of Maralal Diocese, which was erected from the Diocese of Marsabit in 2001 recalled “with appreciation Bishop Ravasi’s total and selfless dedication to the Gospel and cause for evangelization in the Dioceses of Marsabit and Maralal (and indeed the entire Church).”
“It is our prayer that his devoted ministry, example, teachings and way of life will inspire the church with a missionary spirit and the deep desire to make Christ known and loved by all,” they eulogized.
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Fr. Joseph Gitonga, the Rector of the Marsabit-based Maria Mfariji Shrine where Bishop Ravasi stayed after his retirement, remembered his confrere as a “joyful, cheerful and highly prayerful” person.
“He was a great missionary and a great spiritual father. In him I saw not only a Bishop, but a real brother who would come to the aid of all,” Fr. Joseph told ACI Africa in an interview Friday, October 30.
The Kenyan Cleric described the late Bishop as “a man of the Rosary who was the most devout in the community, always ready to lead us during prayers and in the Rosary.”
He remembered Bishop Ravasi’s humility saying, “Imagine one who was once a Superior, a Rector and one who was a Bishop for 26 years to retire and remain in Marsabit in a Marian Shrine. He accepted me to become his boss as the Rector of the Shrine and he was assisting me.”
“He always told us, Life is hard, but we should persevere to the end,” Fr. Joseph recalled and added in reference to the late Bishop Ravasi, “He has persevered to the end. May he Rest in Peace.”
In another eulogy, the Vicar General of the Diocese of Marsabit, Fr. Racho Ibrahim said, “We have lost a great Missionary and a man of Great Faith.”
He called for continued prayers for “the repose of the soul of our beloved Bishop Ambrogio Ravasi.”
“The date of the Burial will be communicated in due time as consultation is underway,” Fr. Racho has said, indicating that burial will take place at the Maria Mfariji Shrine in Marsabit.
Magdalene Kahiu is a Kenyan journalist with passion in Church communication. She holds a Degree in Social Communications from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). Currently, she works as a journalist for ACI Africa.