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Bishop of Kenya’s Nakuru Diocese Appointed Apostolic Administrator of Kisumu Archdiocese

Bishop Maurice Muhatia of Kenya's Nakuru Diocese who has been appointed Apostolic Administrator of Kisumu Archdiocese. Credit: ACI Africa

Pope Francis has appointed the Bishop of Kenya’s Nakuru Diocese as the Apostolic Administrator of the Archdiocese of Kisumu, which became vacant following the transfer of Archbishop Philip Anyolo to Nairobi Archdiocese.

The Apostolic Nuncio in Kenya announced the appointment of Bishop Maurice Muhatia Makumba as Apostolic Administrator of Kisumu Archdiocese Saturday, November 20 during the installation of Archbishop Anyolo.

As long as the Archdiocese of Kisumu is vacant, Archbishop Bert van Megen said, “the Holy Father has appointed the Apostolic Administrator for the Archdiocese of Kisumu … the man here next to me, Bishop Maurice Muhatia, the Bishop of Nakuru.”

“The Holy Father grants you all the faculties that are necessary to govern that Archdiocese until the new Bishop is appointed. Thank you very much and God bless you,” the representative of the Pope Francis in Kenya who doubles as the Apostolic Nuncio to South Sudan told Bishop Muhatia.

The 53-year-old member of the Clergy of Kenya’s Kakamega Diocese who serves as the Vice-Chairman of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) was ordained a Priest on 15 October 1994.

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He started his Episcopal Ministry on 27 February 2010 when he was ordained Bishop of Nakuru Diocese at the age of 41.

The alumnus of the Rome-based Pontifical University of the Holy Cross (Santa Croce) where he obtained a Licentiate and Doctorate in Philosophy currently chairs the Council of the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA), the Kenya-based institution of the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa.

Credit: Courtesy Photo

In December 2020, the Kenyan Bishop cautioned women and men Religious and members of the Clergy in Africa against family ties that can hinder their lifelong commitment to the service of God’s people.

“Sometimes, our families can be an obstacle to our vocations if we are not careful especially on the continent of Africa,” Bishop Muhatia said during the 4 December 2020 event in his Diocese when four members of the Franciscan Missionaries of St Joseph (FMSJ) took their perpetual vows.

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Some parents in Africa look at vocations to Religious Life as “a job”, expecting their children who embrace such life to support them financially, the Kenyan Bishop observed, and advised, “Parents must be inducted even before the sisters are taken through their first profession. They must understand that their children are not going to take a job to bring home a salary.”

“There is need for induction. We cannot take things for granted because tomorrow, the family is going to become an obstacle to the life of a Religious person,” Bishop Muhatia explained.

In September, the Bishop shared his input on the Synod on Synodality saying while the initiative specifically stands out for including the people of God at the local level in the decision-making processes of the Church, it does not however translate to some form of democracy where opinions will be accepted outside the hierarchical structures of the Church.

“Involvement of the laity in the decision making does not mean we are advocating for a democratic Church. A Synodal process for a Synodal Church is supposed to happen within an already established hierarchical structure of the Church,” Bishop Muhatia said during his September 18 virtual presentation that was organized by the Paulines Publications Africa.

In his role as Bishop caretaker of Kisumu Archdiocese, Bishop Muhatia is expected to oversee the administration of the 4,616 square kilometer Archdiocese, which has an estimated population of 1,586,232 Catholics, according to 2020 statistics.

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