, 08 November, 2019 / 2:06 AM
In the wake of the recent heavy rains and flooding that have affected the livelihoods of millions in East Africa, the Local Ordinary of the Kenyan diocese of Lodwar, Bishop Dominic Kimengich is soliciting funds toward the reconstruction of the diocesan Pastoral Centre damaged by the floods.
“We experienced floods recently which we have never experienced before because it was really very destructive,” Bishop Kimengich told ACI Africa.
He called the destructive nature of the floods including St. Theresa’s Pastoral Centre saying, “The floods destroyed things, it was three metres high and it went into houses, institutions, schools and our pastoral centre was hit very hard and we lost a lot of things.”
Among the damaged items in the Pastoral Centre, the Kenyan Prelate told ACI Africa, included “all the beds, mattresses, refrigerators, TVs which were there; even the kitchen was also swept away and part of it even sunk.”
“The floods deposited a lot of soil and we do not even know where to start” he said.
“We need over 10 million ($100,000.00) because when we count all the things that have been destroyed or carried away by water, even the electricity we have to do the wiring again,” Bishop Kimengich disclosed and reiterated, “We are already counting the loss to be at least 10 million shillings and that is a lot of money for us.”
“Understand our situation in Lodwar, we really need help from our donors, from our well-wishers and people who would feel with us so that we are able to restore back this Centre,” the Kenyan Bishop said.
Describing the Center as being “at the heart of our operations as a diocese,” Bishop Kimengich underscored the importance of the Centre saying it is “a Centre where we have been having our retreats, meetings even people come and use that Centre.”
“We would really wish to see that it’s operational and that's why I wish to make a very urgent appeal, if we could be assisted so that we can be able to restore back our Centre, buy the things that were carried away and be able to resume the operations of the Centre,” the Bishop said.
In a separate interview with the Kenyan Bishops’ National Communications Network News, the Bishop called on the government to consider investing in a long-term solution through building dykes.
“The Government must look at the issue of River Turkwel and identify areas where they can build dykes to prevent floods,” Bishop Kimengich was quoted as saying.”
The Catholic Diocese of Lodwar, which was erected in 1978 measures 77,000 square kilometres. In 2016, it had an estimated population of 108,097 Catholics.
The diocese borders South Sudan to the north and Uganda to the West.
ACI Africa was officially inaugurated on August 17, 2019 as a continental Catholic news agency at the service of the Church in Africa. Headquartered in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, this media apostolate will strive to facilitate the telling of Africa’s story by providing media coverage of Catholic events on the African continent, giving visibility to the activities of the Church across Africa where statistics show significant growth in numbers and the continent gradually becoming the axis of Catholicism. This is expected to contribute to an awareness of and appreciation for the significant role of the Church in Africa and over time, the realization of a realistic image of Africa that often receives negative media framing.
Father Don Bosco Onyalla
Editor-in-Chief, ACI Africa