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Wednesday, March 1, 2017
World's military chaplains meet in Kenya
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¬†A weeklong international conference on "Strengthening Christian Values in the armed forces world-wide, ha opened at Karen, near the Kenyan capital, Nairobi and ends on September 30. The conference, taking place for the first time in Africa, has brought together over 60 Catholic chaplains and military personnel from both Africa and Europe. It is being organized by the Vienna in Austria-based Apostolat Militaire International (International Military Apostolate), with aims to assist delegates deliberate on topics, namely: The Christian Soldier and his/her family; The Christian soldier and the challenges of leadership; And the Christian soldier in the secularized society. Presiding over a colourful Mass to kick off the conference, Kenyan Catholic Bishop Alfred Rotich, head of the local church's diocese of Military Ordinariate hoped the delegates will come out clearly with a recommendation on the best way to help the soldier and his/her family to be an effective Christian person. "We look forward for recommendations as how best the Church would manage to inculcate Christian values in the life of the soldier and his/her family", he stressed during the Mass held at the church's ≠Catholic-Resurrection Gardens, opened by the late Pope John Paul II in 1995, when he made a pastoral visit to Kenya to present the report of the historic African Synod to the Church in Africa. And in his opening remarks, Kenya's Chief of General Staff. Jeremiah Kianga thanked the Church and Catholic Church in particular, for her chaplaincy ministry among the armed forces. "The move to inculcate Christian values among the soldiers would bring forth better results on the soldier and his/her service to the nation". The conference has brought together delegates from Nigeria, Kenya, Slovenia, Belgium, Germany, Netherlands, Portugal, Lithuania, Austria, Switzerland, and United Kingdom. The Apostolic Militaire International (AMI) is an international Catholic organization that has been recognized by the Holy See. It comprises associations and organizations of military members who act in the spirit of the conciliary degree on the lay apostolate, taking into account the special conditions obtaining in their respective country. It is an umbrella organization for catholic soldiers' communities and organizations, which acts within the spirit of the decrees of the Second Vatican Consultation on the lay apostolate (Apostolicam Actuositatem), taking into account for the special conditions obtaining in those countries where AMI is represented. The conference is being hosted by the Military Ordinariate Diocese-Catholic, head by Bishop Alfred Rotich.
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