Pope Francis Appoints Lt. Col. Rev. Fr. John Njue Njeru as Apostolic Administrator of Military Ordinariate
By Rose Achiego Ande
In a significant development, Pope Francis has appointed Lieutenant Colonel and Reverend Father John Njue Njeru as the Apostolic Administrator of the Military Ordinariate. The announcement was made today during a meeting with the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) Permanent Council, where Monsignor Njeru was introduced by KCCB Chairman Most Rev. Martin Kivuva at the Catholic Secretariate, Waumini House.
Born on July 3, 1972, and ordained as a priest of the Catholic Diocese of Embu, Monsignor Njeru has an extensive background in military and pastoral service. His service in the Catholic Church has been marked by a series of significant milestones.
Early Life and Ordination:
Monsignor Njeru’s spiritual journey began with his baptism at Nguviu Parish on August 5, 1972, followed by confirmation at the same parish on March 3, 1982. His dedication to the ministry became evident on May 17, 1997, when he took on the role of Acolyte at Sacred Heart – Kyeni Parish. Later, on August 24, 2001, he was ordained a deacon and served at St. John the Baptist – Kirie Parish. Taking a step further in his commitment, he was ordained as a priest on April 6, 2022, continuing his service at St. John the Baptist – Kirie Parish.
Monsignor Njeru completed his KCSE at Nguviu Boys High School from 1988 to 1991. Subsequently, he earned degrees and diplomas in Philosophical and Religious Studies (1993-1994) and Theological Studies (1995-2000) from Urbaniana University. His educational pursuits also include a Higher Diploma in Psychological Counseling (2008-2009) from KEMU College and a Master’s degree in Social Ministry (2016-2018) from Tangaza University College. Notably, he holds a certificate in Military Ethics and Integrity from the Jordanian Military School (2015) and attended a Leadership Conference at St Mary’s University, Twickenham, United Kingdom, in 2022.
Skills and Achievements:
Monsignor Njeru brings a diverse skill set to his new role, including proficiency in office administration, human resource management, financial resource mobilization, strategic planning, project development, social research, and counseling. His military service, which commenced in September 2003, saw him posted to various locations, including the 77 Artillery Battalion and the Recruit Training School in Eldoret.
His achievements as the First Residential Roman Catholic Chaplain at Embakasi Garrison, Eastern Command, include the actualization of the construction of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Embakasi Garrison.
Military and Pastoral Assignments:
Monsignor Njeru’s diverse roles include serving as the Military Ordinariate of Kenya Biblical Pastoral Ministry Coordinator from September 2003 to July 2023. His contributions as Staff Officer – Class 2 (SO2) from January 2008 to September 2011 involved coordinating operations at the Military Ordinariate secretariat, facilitating planning, implementation, and monitoring of pastoral programs, and overseeing recruitment and training of pastoral agents.
He further served as Chaplain in various capacities, including at Kenya Navy Headquarters Mtongwe Base (Mombasa), in African peacekeeping Missions in Somalia, and at Tangaza University College for his Master’s degree. His role as a Roman Catholic Staff Administration Officer (SO2) from February 2020 to December 22, 2022, at the office of the Apostolic Administrator – Defence Headquarters, involved responsibilities such as Diocesan Finance Administrator and Parish Priest at St. Peter & Paul (Cathedral Parish at Defence Headquarters).
Monsignor Njeru’s recent appointment as Senior Chaplain (Staff Officer Class 1) from December 22, 2022, onwards underscores his elevated responsibilities in overseeing the administrative and coordination duties of the Military Ordinariate of Kenya under the Office of the Apostolic Administrator Retired Monsignor Benjamin Maswili.
His recent promotion on May 26, 2023, to Senior Chaplain, reflects his continued dedication and leadership within the Military Ordinariate of Kenya.
In his ongoing commitment to professional development, Monsignor Njeru participated in the Defence Forces Chaplaincy Resilience Development Course at Accra, Ghana, from November 26, 2023, to December 10, 2023.
The appointment of Monsignor John Njue Njeru as the Apostolic Administrator of the Military Ordinariate signifies a momentous chapter in his distinguished service to both the Catholic Church and the military. His extensive background, skills, and achievements underscore his readiness to take on this significant role, guiding the Military Ordinariate in its spiritual and pastoral mission.
Source/Credit: Catholic Mirror -KCCB.