Thursday, February 13, 2014

News from Nairobi

By James Chege
Maryknoll Institute of African Studies

Participants of the one-day course sample the unique African batiks created by a Tanzanian artist, Kirita, which are on offer at MIASMU.

MIASMU hosts visitors with one-day course

The Maryknoll Institute of African Studies hosted a group from the Maryknoll Mission Education and Promotion, Western region of the U.S. for a one-day course. The course took place on Saturday, Feb. 8, and was focused on African spirituality.

The group was taught by Laurenti Magesa, an associate professor of Saint Mary’s and a faculty member of  MIASMU since it began in 1989.  Magesa is a distinguished professor in moral theology and African spirituality, and is the author of several books with his latest title “What is Not Sacred?: African spirituality” published by Orbis Books.

The group is based in the San Francisco Bay area and was on a two-week trip to Kenya and neighboring Tanzania visiting Maryknoll programs. One of the participants is the retired bishop of Reno/Las Vega. The one-day course was aimed to equip them with some foundational cultural skills needed to process their experiences in Africa.

The general feedback from the participants was that it was a very enlightening experience. They seemed to take a particular liking to the field study which they carried out in the afternoon, each with a personal field assistant. A Kenyan University graduate said that it was the best kind of orientation anyone would have hoped for as they started their two week trip.