The Region of Kenya gladly welcomed Fr. Gregory Gay, CM for a visit from Thursday, July 2 to Monday, July 6, 2015. On Thursday morning, Fr. Gay visited Mrs. Lucy Kayiwa and the members of the Society of St. Vincent DePaul working in the Kibera slum in the heart of Nairobi. The group runs St. Vincent’s Nursery School for children who live in the slums and whose parents are HIV positive. The Congregation owns the house and provides financial support. He also visited their Rescue House that provides a home like atmosphere for homeless and abandoned children. At his next stop at St. Vincent DePaul Parish – Kamulu, he was greeted by Fr. Chrisandus Ambale, CM, the Father-in-Charge, Fr. Nicholas Kaloki, CM and Rev. Mr. Humphreys Makokha, CM. They gave Fr. Gay a tour of the new rectory under construction, the recently completed water tower, and the proposed site for the new parish primary school.
On Friday, Fr. Gay took a flight to Kitale in Western Kenya near the border of Uganda. He visited a new work of the Congregation, St. Kizito – Matisi staffed by Fr. Joseph Namanda, CM, Fr. Dominic Ngangah, CM. And Deacon John Bosco Odongo, CM. The parish and its outstations are located next to the Falkland slums, a place where the main source of income is illegal brewing and the primary preoccupation is drinking and alcohol addiction. The Daughters of Charity at the house across the street, Nyote Asubuhi, hosted the Superior General and the confreres for dinner after the celebration of the Eucharist.
After this, the Father General returned to DePaul Centre – Nairobi on Saturday. Brother Jim Donlevy, CM and Fr. George Busieka, CM with the confreres at DePaul Centre threw a traditional American 4th of July party complete with barbecued hot dogs, hamburgers, and potato salad.
Early Sunday morning, the Father General set out for central Kenya to St. Vincent Parish – Giathugu in the shadow of Mount Kenya. The parish, administered by Fr. Alex Isonga, CM with assistance from Fr. Samuel Ngasike and Deacon Edwin Mugwe, CM, caters to poor subsistence farmers. There he celebrated mass at the outstations in a combination of Kikuyu and English, toured the facilities, and met with parish leaders. Upon his return, he shared dinner with the Daughters of Charity at Chanzo, their regional house in Nairobi. Both the Vincentians and the Daughters are grateful for his visit. On Monday morning, July 6, he departed for his next destination – Tanzania.