Divine Word Missionaries
Info & News
From: Carlos Lima
To: Niels Johansen
Sent: Wednesday, January 02, 2008 1:20 PM
Carlos, From Kenya
Dear Fr. Niels,
Thanks for your response. Here in Nairobi and some other parts of the country life is slowly returning to its normal calm.
However, in Eldoret region the tension is still high. You might have accompanied it through BBC, yesterday a church (Assembly of God) was set on fire and some 35 to 40 women and children were burnt alive. It was a horrific scene that shows the extent to which violence has reached in that area. That has made the number of people seeking for refuge in our mission to increase as the place where the sad event took place is neighbouring to our parish area.
In our mission, Holy Spirit Parish, there in Eldoret, the situation has not changed much. Talking to a confrere on the phone this morning, he told me that last night they had about 4,000 people who slept within the church compound. He said that this morning there was a bit of calm and some people ventured to go out in search of food. But people are still afraid due to lack of security and in the evening they are likely to come back to the mission compound. The major problem they are facing is lack of food.
This morning I also spoke on the phone to somebody from Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace and I was told that the Bishop were in a meeting discussing the situation and preparing a statement calling for calm, peace and reconciliation between the warring factions. They were also discussing the logistic of how to make the humanitarian help reach the affected areas.
Some numbers from the local media points out that the death toll has reached to 178 people killed in the post election clashes. And the number of internally displaced people is about 70,000. That coupled with the trail of destruction left behind buy the clashes means that it will take some time for the country to go back to its normal day-to-day life.
Once again thanks for your response an concern. Keep us in your prayers and let us hope that soon peace will be restored.
In the Divine Word,
Fr. Carlos V. Lima, SVD.