Mothers Union

mothers-union

Introduction
The Mother’s Union department of Diocese of All Saints Cathedral was started on 1st February 2003. This was after the division from the bigger Nairobi Diocese in September 2002.

It started under the leadership of The Most Rev. Emeritus Benjamin Nzimbi, former Archbishop of Kenya and Bishop of All Saints Cathedral Diocese. Mrs. Alice Nzimbi was the first Diocesan Chairlady and the Provincial Chairlady.

His Grace the Most Rev. Dr. Eliud Wabukala is now the Bishop of All Saints Cathedral Diocese and Archbishop of Kenya and the Mothers Union Patron. This Diocese started with six parishes but now has 12 parishes and several daughter churches.  

It started on a low key but with God’s help and grace, we were able to do a very successful fund-raising in June 2004 where we raised about KShs 1.3m.

Activities
Enrolments take place every year and we have about 1500 ladies enrolled into the Mothers Union so far. Because we are a small sized Diocese, we have held these enrolment services in different parishes and this has been a great encouragement to our mothers.

Before the enrolments we have a Talent week were our Mothers in the parishes’ minister to various need in the community. These include visiting the sick, widowed and bereaved. The parish Vicar goes out to pray with them and encourage them. They also clean inside and outside the churches and repair torn hymnbooks and prayer books. This is a week we all come together to thank God for the various talents He has given unto us.

The Diocese has a Saving Society that was registered on 2nd November 2005 under the name of All Saints Cathedral Mothers Union Co-operative Savings and Credit Society Limited.(ASMUS Sacco)

ASMUS Sacco hopes to increase the economic growth of its members by encouraging saving, loaning, investing and building one another through various ways. The total number of bona-fide members from the eleven parishes stands at almost two hundred. This number continues to grow as more members from the Mothers Union are gaining confidence in the Sacco and expressing willingness to register.

The Emeritus Archbishop, The Most Rev. Benjamin Nzimbi who was also the Bishop of All Saints Cathedral Diocese, launched the Ministry of Widows at the Diocesan level in June 2005. The Ministry of Widows at the Diocesan level is now very active and has taken on the Name given to them by the Late Mama Caren – “The Kings Daughters”.

This ministry exists to help and empower by training the many widows within the Diocese who need a forum to address the issues they have in common. They have held seminars and are looking forward to launching their name. They have also started saving on a monthly basis as they do table banking.  

Most widows however are in denial of their status or too young and are not willing to be identified as widows.

The Mothers Union in the Diocese also supports the St. Nicholas Children’s Home, which is in our Diocese. We visit them, cook lunch for them on a quarterly basis, and then give them a Christmas party as we pray for the standard eight candidates in November every year. We  buy food-stuff such as maize, beans, rice, cooking fat and other basic items such as toilet paper, shoe polish, lotion etc that the children may need.  The children get very encouraged and look forward to our visits and prayers with them.

Mothers Union in the Diocese has continued to work closely with Kenya Anglican Men’s Association (KAMA).This we do by attending their functions and encouraging our Husbands to join this KAMA. This is because KAMA objectives help strengthen our relationships with our spouses and enhances Spiritual growth in the family.

During and after the post-election skirmishes, mothers in the Diocese prayed, contributed food and clothing, visited and counselled the displaced within and out of Nairobi. We fasted , prayed, repented, and forgave one another during our Lady Day because of what was happening in the country.

Indeed, the Prayer Action and Outreach committee can attest that God is Faithful and His Mercies endure forever as He has continued to answer our prayers.

Mothers Union members continue to participate in various development activities in their parishes. We also have a link with the Mothers Union of Diocese of Carlisle who we are grateful for their prayers as we pray for them too.

We hope to strengthen this relationship more.
 
Challenges

1. Poverty
A good number of our parishes are situated in the slums of Nairobi especially Kibera. 

Poverty continues to be a major problem among our members, as many of them do not have permanent employment. They live in poor conditions and contributing money to the activities of the Mothers Union is extremely difficult in some of our parishes.

This makes it difficult for us to run the Diocese effectively.

2. HIV/AIDS
HIV/AIDS scourge has hit our members greatly. They are either sick or looking after infected people in their families and taking care of orphans.

Violence in families against women, children and the wider family members continue to be on the increase. 

Child abuse in the form of rape, incest and child labour has continued. This was even more so with the post-election violence that we witnessed early this year. Many families were displaced and are yet to be settled.

We are as a Diocese trying to embrace all the ladies in our congregation especially the young women to join Mothers Union and seeking ways on how to re-brand ourselves to be attractive to them. As a diocese we are seeking ways of embracing the Anglican woman to enabling her to feel part of the Union as we create forums for young mothers, professional, the elderly and single mothers to meet. This is a great challenge we hope to accomplish.

The Way Forward
We are working very closely with the Youth department and hope to be incorporated into some of their program as Mentors. With the help of the deanery rallies we intend to reach to as many mothers as possible.  

There is need to empower the women financially by training them in entrepreneur skills and assisting them to access financial services.

Parishes with the assistance of the Diocesan office need to come up with activities that are relevant to their situations with the intention of attracting and retaining ladies in Mothers’ Union.

Five Targets That We Can Achieve
1. Enhance Spiritual Growth of the women through starting more Bible Study groups and mentoring program for new mothers in the parishes
2. Have a Diocesan Luncheon Fundraiser.
3. Have a Diocesan Music festival.
4. Have a Diocesan Walk
5. Start an Income generating Activity in the Diocese.

We have continuously trained the Women leaders, the clergy wives and the Diocesan executives within the parishes. This is because we realize that education has no end and when a woman is empowered, the whole community grows.

As the saying goes:”Educate a man and you educate an individual, educate a woman and you educate a community”.

Head of Department

Beth Mbugua

 

 

Educate a man and you educate an individual, educate a woman and you educate a community.

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