The Archbishop encouraged the men to be reading the lives of saints as part of their spiritual reading and gave an example of the life of St. John Maria Vianney, the Cure of Ars and the Patron of all Priests.
“St. John Maria Vianney was sent to a faraway parish where there was very little faith. However, because of his good example of prayer, his humility, catechesis, and life of penance the parish gradually changed. Later many other people came from very far to listen to him,” he narrated.
And recalling his own experience on his Golden Jubilee celebration of his Priestly ordination, Archbishop Kairo further narrated how he had to leave his native Diocese of Nakuru to shepherd the people of God in Nyeri Archdiocese, away from home.
Born in 1941 into a family of four sons and five daughters, Archbishop Kairo first worked at Holy Rosary Parish in Kenya’s Nakuru Diocese before he was appointed Administrator of Christ the King Cathedral and Vicar General of the same Diocese.
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In March 1983, he was appointed by Pope John Paul II as the first Bishop of the newly erected Diocese of Murang’a and ordained Bishop of the Diocese in May the same year. After 14 years in Muranga, in April 1997 at the age of 55, he was appointed the Bishop of Nakuru.
Sharing his experience at the appointment, he said, “My greatest challenge having been appointed Bishop of Nakuru – my home Diocese, was if I would be accepted, because Jesus said that a prophet is not accepted in his hometown.”
After serving in Nakuru for 11 years, Pope Benedict XVI appointed him Archbishop of Nyeri where he ministered for another eight years until he retired, paving way for Archbishop Anthony Muheria.
During the November 7 event, Archbishop Kairo was celebrated as “a man of God with many firsts.”
“He is the first Priest ordained for Nakuru Diocese. He is also the first Priest to be ordained by Bishop Ndingi. He is also the first Priest of Nakuru to be elevated to a Bishop. Again, he is the first Bishop of Murang’a,” Fr. Casmir wrote in the report shared with ACI Africa.
Archbishop Kairo was the Local Ordinary of Nyeri during the historic beatification of Blessed Irene Stephanie (Nyaatha) in May 2015, the very first beatification ceremony in Kenya.