Catholics in Kenya Invited to Foster “inclusive, accountable governance” During Lent 2021

The front cover of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops' (KCCB) 2021 Lenten Campaign booklet.

Bishops in Kenya are inviting Catholics in the East African country to seek to foster “inclusive and accountable governance” as a way of rebuilding the nation during this year’s Lenten Season.

The invitation is contained in a booklet guiding the 2021 Lenten Campaign titled “Rebuilding Our Nation Through Inclusive and Accountable Governance.”

While the 40-day period will begin on February 17, the Lenten Campaign in Kenya is expected to be launched on February 13 in the Catholic Diocese of Malindi.

“Of particular importance for this year’s Lenten Campaign is the theme of inclusive and accountable governance,” the members of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) say in the Campaign booklet obtained by ACI Africa.

In the preface of the booklet signed by the Chairman of the Catholic Justice and Peace Commission (CJPC) of KCCB, Bishop John Owaa Oballa, the Bishops underscore the value of moral consciousness saying, “We recognize that without depth in moral formation, it is difficult to achieve inclusive and accountable governance.”


Moral formation, they say in their Lenten Campaign guide, “is a foundation for the journey to holiness that all Christians and other people of goodwill are invited into through the sacraments, reaching out to our neighbors and being responsible stewards of God’s gifts to us.”

The Bishops describe moral formation as a “call to holiness” and decry Kenya’s seeming loss of moral compass.

“Integrity is a moral tenet and an administrative principle that, if respected, helps us recognize the need for an upright and selfless service to each other, regardless of one’s social status,” KCCB members note in the 56-page Lenten Campaign booklet.

Making reference to the Gospel according to Matthew, KCCB members recall that Jesus Christ summarizes the lessons on integrity when he says, “Whatsoever you do to the least of my people that you do unto me.”

“Our conduct and our works ought to reflect honesty, accountability and transparency. In this way we shall be at the service of each other as brothers and sisters of the same God,” they explain.

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Set to run until the end of the Lent Season on April 1, the Bishops explain that they are focusing the Lenten Campaign on moral formation “because of the lessons we are learning from the realities around us.”

Such realities include “the existential threats to the family, the worrying cases of teen pregnancies, political mobilization of youth to cause violence, rampant corruption, insecurity in parts of the country and the tendencies to break the love and unity of our country, which is essentially a family of God,” the Bishops in their collective document.

Against this background, the Bishops say that the weekly thematic areas of the Lenten Campaign “reflect the spirit” of the Bishops’ Pastoral Letter that was issued in February 2020 at the Marian Shrine in Subukia, in Kenya’s Diocese of Nakuru.

The weekly thematic areas are meant to guide personal and community reflections. They include holiness in the family, holiness in the moral formation of the youth, holiness in breaking the chain of corruption, moral duty to improving security for all, and finding holiness in the common good.

During the Lenten Campaign, Catholics across the country will be expected to make Lenten contributions at Parish level, with the proceeds rechanneled to Parishes and the national CJPC office for various needs.


In a previous interview, Bishop Oballa told ACI Africa that the Lenten contributions submitted to the national office of CJPC are used to finance “a particular national need that the office can assist” in line with the Lenten Collection Policy.

During the 2020 Lenten Campaign, a total of 9,757,946.00 shillings (USD 88,708) was remitted to the CJPC national office, according to information provided in the 2021 Lenten Campaign booklet.

“We encourage that this Lenten Campaign helps us to reflect, pray and remain steadfast in doing what is right before God. We are all called to holiness in our small ways, for this is where God speaks with us – as we are,” the Bishops say in their 2021 Lenten Campaign booklet.

They add, “As we address the issue of Rebuilding Our Nation Through Inclusive and Accountable Governance, let us do it in the spirit of Lent, which is a time of prayer, fasting and alms giving.”