Celebrating the life of the Late Rev. Fr. Daniel Ltobikon Lesurmat

Burial of the Rev. Fr. Daniel Lesurmat at the Sts.Peter and Paul Maralal Cathedral Parish Cemetry.
Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let the perpetual light shine upon him🕊.
May he rest in peace. AMEN🙏🕊

 

Eulogy and tribute by the Clergy of Maralal Diocese

Introduction

Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His servant.

Your Lordship, Hieronymus Emusugut Joya, the Ordinary of the Catholic Diocese of Maralal; Very Rev. Fr. Joseph Lengolos, Vicar General; Rev. Fr. Peter Nderitu, the Chairman of the Diocesan Clergy, priests, Religious men and women; esteemed relatives and friends of Fr. Lesurmat, Government and Political Leaders, and fellow People of God, the Apostle Paul exhorts us with these words: “The saying is sure: If we have died with him, we shall also live with him; if we endure, we shall also reign with him” (II Tm 2:11-12).

In a special way, we greet and extend deeply heartfelt condolences to the entire Lesurmat family, the priests and Christians of Wamba Parish, Fr. Dan’s home parish and the Christians of Lodokejek parish, his last place of assignment. Take heart! We are together in this!

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, we gather in this Cathedral, in spiritual communion with many brethren throughout the diocese and beyond, who are united with us in prayer, some in their privacy and solitude, and many who have joined us through radio and facebook live in this celebration of our beloved priest’s funeral.  We thank you for being with us.

Today not to mourn the loss of a man, but to celebrate the life of a soul who graced our midst as a beacon of light and a vessel of divine grace. Today, we bid farewell to a zealous shepherd of hearts, a courageous guardian of spirits, a tireless witness, a custodian of faith, and a passionate servant of God’s love  – Reverend Father Daniel Ltobikon Lesurmat.

Today we bury his remains in the earth as a seed of immortality – our hearts are full of sadness, yet at the same time, of joyful hope and profound gratitude.

Christian Life

Daniel was baptized on April 21, 1984, and two months later, he received the Sacrament of Confirmation on June 10, 1984. He was ordained a deacon in 1999 here in Maralal. He was later ordained into the sacred priesthood at St. Aloysius Gonzaga Catholic Parish on May 14, 2000. Today marks his 24th priestly anniversary.

Called to the Jumuiyas

Fr. Daniel Lesurmat, the “apostle of the Jumuiyas” as we used to call him was so passionate about the formation of the Small Christian communities. He was always among his people, in their homes, but most especially, in the jumuiyas. He opened, formed and celebrated countless Holy Masses in many Jumuiyas in Suguta Marmar, Maralal Cathedral, Morijo, Archers Post and Lodokejek to mention but a few parishes in which he served.

His priestly ministry was marked with a joyful demeanor, vibrant preaching and a profound understanding of Samburu culture. Serving at the translation committee together with our late Fr. Alois Lempuruk and a host of other dedicated experts, Fr. Daniel bequeathed us with the legacy of the following texts: Misa Ng’ida, Misa Sinyati, Lesionari Lari A, Lesionari Lari B, Lesionari Lari C, Nkoitei e Lmusalaba and Osotua Ng’ejuk. He also contributed immensely in the Samburu Bible while working with the Bible Translation and Literacy (BTL).

Fr. Daniel was a gifted Teacher. He taught catechesis and Church history at the Catechists Training Center (CTC), in his various program and masses in Samburu language at Radio Serian and at our own Radio Mchungaji. We still miss his commanding presence in the air waves.

Ecce Homo (Latin: “Behold the Man”)

Despite his sacred calling, Father Daniel was not immune to the trials and tribulations of human existence. He bore within him the scars of his own wounds, the echoes of his own struggles, and the weight of his own frailty. Yet, it was precisely because of his humanity, because of his willingness to confront his own weaknesses and limitations, that he was able to extend a hand of compassion and understanding to those who suffered.

In the midst of his dedicated service, Father Daniel faced a brief period of illness. He was admitted at Nairobi West Hospital in Nairobi, after complaining of pain and discomfort. There, he received treatment until he was transferred to St. Bridget Hospital for specialized care. It was not long after his admission that he went to be with the Lord on April 5, 2024. His suffering and death, united with Christ, remind us of the words of John Paul II “In sacrificing himself for us all, Christ gave a new meaning to suffering, opening up a new dimension, a new order: the order of love….it is this suffering which burns and consumes evil with the flame of love and draws forth even from sin a great flowering of good” (John Paul II, Memory and Identity, pp 189-190)

Psalm 23, the passage that guided Father Daniel’s life, reminds us of the comforting presence of the Lord as our shepherd. “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.” These words echoed in Father Daniel’s heart as he ministered to his flock, guiding them through the valleys of life with the assurance of God’s abiding love and provision.

In his eyes, we found the reflection of God’s infinite love, and in his words, we heard the echoes of timeless truths. His homilies were not mere lectures but profound invitations to delve deeper into the mysteries of existence, to explore the contours of our souls, and to embrace the divine spark that resides within each of us.

Father Daniel spoke not from a place of lofty detachment but from the depths of his own humanity. He shared his doubts, his fears, and his moments of despair, inviting us to embrace our own vulnerabilities and find strength in our shared humanity. Through his words, he reminded us that it is in our brokenness that we find our truest selves, and it is in our wounds that we discover the capacity for healing and growth.

In the sacrament of reconciliation, Father Daniel became a conduit for divine mercy, offering absolution and forgiveness to all who sought solace and redemption. He understood that the journey of faith is not one of perfection but of ongoing conversion, of stumbling and rising again, of falling short and being lifted up by the grace of God.

Father Daniel’s life was a testament to the paradox of the wounded healer – a soul who, in his own brokenness, became a channel for divine healing and grace. He walked among us as a living embodiment of the words of the Apostle Paul, who wrote, “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me” (2 Corinthians 12:9).

Indeed, Father Daniel was a man of peace, even when he spoke the bitter truth, he garbed his words in  humor that brought joy to those around him. In our circles, every time we sat to enjoy some refreshing waters, Fr. Daniel would immediately say “Maapetin bwana,” loosely translated as “let’s go.” He had a nickname for almost everyone of us his brothers.

He was a philosopher and theologian whose contemplations soared to the heights of divine wisdom and plumbed the depths of human experience. He pondered the mysteries of creation, the enigma of suffering, and the meaning of existence with a mind that was both humble and inquisitive. His insights were not confined to the dusty tomes of academia but found expression in the rhythm of daily life, in the laughter of children, and in the tears of the grieving.

CONGRATULATIONS SEMINARIAN NAPHTALI LOOWOI.

Let’s give a huge round of applause and prayers to Seminarian Naphtali Loowoi from Maralal Parish for successfully completing his major seminary journey.
Your dedication, faith and hard work are truly inspiring. May God continue to guide and strengthen you in every step of your way to Priesthood.
Congratulations and blessings on your future endeavors.

CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF ISIOLO NEW BISHOP ELECT REV. FR PETER MUNGUTI MAKAU

Pope Francis has appointed Very Rev. Fr. Peter Munguti Makau, as the coadjutor Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Isiolo.
The news of Fr. Munguti’s appointment was officially published in the L’Osservatore Romano in Rome on 2nd May at 12.00pm Rome time and 1.00pm Kenyan time. The Apostolic Nuncio to Kenya and South Sudan, His Excellency Archbishop Bert van Megen, also sent an official communication to the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) communicating the same.
The Nuncio’s letter reads in part, “I have the honour and pleasure to inform you that Pope Francis has appointed the Reverend Father Peter Munguti Makau, IMC, as the Coadjutor Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Isiolo. The Bishop-elect belongs to the congregation of the Consolata Missionaries.”
Congratulations Bishop Elect Peter Munguti

Blessed Easter

The Catholic Diocese of Maralal wishes you a blessed Easter.

“He is not here; he has risen!” —Luke 24:6-7

 

LENTEN CAMPAIGN 2024

WEEK ONE: SOVEREIGNTY OF THE PEOPLE
In the first week of the Lenten Campaign, we reflect on the Sovereignty of the people. We are reminded that the people are the source of all political power as set out in Article 1 of the Kenyan Constitution. The country’s leadership is called upon to protect the sovereignty of the people of Kenya by protecting and promoting political, civil, economic, social, and cultural rights. Holding a public office does not grant a leader the opportunity to enrich him/herself or trample on the rights of the people. Instead, it is an opportunity to serve and provide leadership to the people so they can co-exist peacefully and achieve their development aspirations.

CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF MARALAL PRIESTHOOD JANUARY 2024 ANNIVERSARIES, MARALAL DEANERY.

CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF MARALAL PRIESTHOOD JANUARY 2024 ANNIVERSARIES, MARALAL DEANERY.
Happy Priesthood to our dear Frs. Vicar General. Very Rev. Joseph Lengolos 20 years 36 years Dominic Lesayon, 4 years Cornelio Lomatukae , 4 years Daniel Ntarangwe.
May God bless you to be faithful witnesses to the Ministry of His Word and Sacrament.
Thanks and appreciation to our brother Priests from our Mother Diocese Marsabit Catholic Diocese Frs. Isaiah Eikalo(Laisamis), Francis Mirgichan(Vocation/Pastoral), Abraham Ali (Marsabit Cathedral), Boniface Lesurmat (Karare)
We love you our dear Priests.
St. John Bosco Pray for us.

Pope Francis Appoints Lt. Col. Rev. Fr. John Njue Njeru as Apostolic Administrator of Military Ordinariate

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.
Educational Background:
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).
Current Appointment:
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.

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