As Catholics all over the world marked Ash Wednesday, the Catholic Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Nyeri Anthony Muheria urged Kenyans to use this Lent season to pray for peace in the country during the electioneering period.
According to the Catholic calendar, Ash Wednesday, marks the commencement of Lent season- forty days fasting season before Easter.
The day is set as a solemn reminder of human mortality and the need for reconciliation with God. The day also marks the beginning of the penitential Lenten season and it is commonly celebrated with the application of ashes on the foreheads of Christians who observe it.
Briefing the press after celebrating the Ash Wednesday mass at the Nyeri Cathedral, Muheria asked Kenyans especially Christians to use Lent as a period of prayers, fasting and self-examination by repenting and changing their ways.
“Let all Kenyans and especially Christians observe this period by praying in supplication and fasting for God to hear us and heal our nation. Let’s pray for peace before, during and after election. Let’s also pray for Ukraine who are facing a difficult time,” Muheria said.
The Arch Bishop called upon politicians seeking different positions to avoid polarizing the country during the campaigning period but instead sell their manifesto by sharing their vision instead of hurling insults at each other.
He also called upon church leaders to desist from anointing themselves as prophets who rubber stamp politicians adding that their mandate as church leaders was to offer religious guidance.
“As religious leaders, let’s embrace all the politicians without discrimination. We are not assigned to know who the anointed one is. Let’s deal with them equally without hypocrisy from the Members of County Assembly to presidential aspirants. When they come to us, let’s pray for them privately without causing a scene,” said the Arch Bishop.
By Ann Ngure and Wangari Mwangi