Comboni Lay Missionaries

“KENYA SHINING: When you have VIP visitors and you’re humble enough to… brag about it!”

LMC Kenia
LMC Kenia

Kenya, Kenya, Kenya… a lot is happening in Kenya. People leaving, people coming, visitors of excellence to strengthen our ties with the movement, to grow and shine. Last month it was Hani from Egypt, our African coordinator, accompanied by another Egyptian CLM, Mira, talking to us in our monthly meeting, accompanying the CLM of Kitelakapel in their activities and particularly with the Mental Health Workshops. These days, instead, the house is full of “Have you read that document?” “This is in the conclusions of Maia!” “Elwangen 2006” “Formation guide!”… And I’m sure, unless you are still unfamiliar with the Comboni Lay Missionaries, only that one name must have surfaced to your mind: Alberto de la Portilla!!!

Indeed, our guest of honour this month is our general coordinator, invited by the CLM community of Kitelakapel and the CLM of Kenya to spend some time with us, with the specific aim of guiding our Kitelakapel team as they keep laying the foundations for their young mission.

LMC Kenia

Our Alberto arrived well, and immediately delved into CLM matters, as he was taken to Kariobangi, in Nairobi, to attend our monthly formation meeting. For the occasion, all CLM and candidates gathered, so it was indeed a unique event! We got the chance to hire a house belonging to the Comboni sisters, not far from the parish, where we had all the space, peace and quiet we needed, to focus eagerly on the history of our movement, its most important documents, our identity as CLM, and a personal testimony of Alberto on his own mission experience, with his family and within a community, in Mozambique, a few years ago.

It was surely a wonderful opportunity we had to grow as a group, as we expand our awareness and knowledge of our origins and our identity.

On Sunday, while the candidates were doing mission animation in another parish in Nairobi, the commissioned CLM had their own special moment with our general coordinator, reflecting on how they can keep living, experiencing, practising their vocation as Comboni Lay Missionaries, whether serving in the country or abroad.

All this was obviously accompanied by moments of prayer and sharing.

LMC Kenia

 We are deeply grateful that Alberto’s visit was made possible, as it has given us a chance to reflect again and in depth on who we are and who we want to be, and we hope he will enjoy his time in Kenya, until we meet again before he returns to Spain!

Linda, CLM Kitelakapel

New CLM in Poland

LMC Polonia

On Saturday, June 23 this year, during the meeting of the Combonian family in Krakow, Paweł and Iza ceremonially joined the movement of the Comboni Lay Missionaries.

The event took place before the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, loved by the founder of the congregation, Daniel Comboni. He wrote many times in his letters to always have “eyes fixed on Christ”, these words are the foundation of a missionary’s life.

During the solemn Holy Mass, both candidates read the handwritten act of ac-cession and then presented it to Father Adam Zagaja, who is responsible for CLM in Poland on behalf of the Congregation of the Comboni Missionaries.

CLM, family and friends were present on this important day for Paweł and Iza.

CLM Poland

Preventive conflict management in a Christian family or community.


This theme was expounded to us by the Scholastic Constantine.

In his presentation, Sc. Constantine enumerated some of the causes of our conflicts in community before explaining the biblical basis of conflict management. It is Jesus himself who invites us to a loving resolution of our disagreements (Mt 18:15-17; Mt 6:12; Mt 5:23-24).

Open, sincere and honest communication; the mutual practice of forgiveness among members of the same Christian family; Prayer and Bible study in the family, the spirit of humility and compassion are some preventive strategies for managing conflicts in Christian communities. Conflict management is a pervasive challenge in all spheres of life. As followers of Jesus Christ, Christians are called to live in peace and harmony with one another.

At the end of his presentation, Sc Constantine concluded by saying that the preventive management of conflicts in Christian families and communities is a vital aspect of the Christian life. By following biblical principles, understanding the causes of conflict, and implementing effective prevention strategies, Christians can work together to prevent conflict, promote peace and unity, and witness to the love and grace of Jesus Christ in the world.

Aboe Lucien, CLM candidate.

Recollection in Ghana

LMC Ghana

From March 15 to 17, we had a meeting in Ghana at the Dadome Station for recollection, monthly meeting and pastoral activity.

On Friday March 15, we met in Dadome to do our recollection for this Lenten season. That evening, we meditated on the Stations of the Cross with the faithful of the station. On Saturday morning, after morning prayer, we had the first theme that our brother Christian shared. It was on Dying to oneself to Live with Christ. He invited us to renounce ourselves through certain practices: going against certain practices of our cultures and traditions, loving God more than our parents, being humble are ways of dying to ourselves.

The second theme was Lent: journey for a spiritual combat which was presented by Justin, the coordinator. He insisted on the three priorities of Lent which are prayer, asceticism and fraternity. He invited us to strive to please the Lord by practicing virtue, renouncing carnal pleasures and extending our arms to our brothers and sisters.

Saturday evening was dedicated to the Sacrament of Reconciliation with the presence of Father Chaplain Father Ephrem. Afterwards, we prayed the rosary to end the recollection.

After dinner, we reflected on the economic situation of the group.

On Sunday morning, we followed Father Ephrem for the outdooring ceremony of a newborn baby. Afterwards, we headed to Husikorpe for the Eucharistic celebration. From Husikorpe, we returned to Dadome for a second mass. It was after mass and the family meal that everyone took their way home.

Justin Nougnui, coordinator.

Staying true to our nature

LMC Kenia

Hello Saints!

The month is still fairly new, so please allow me to begin by saying happy new month!

I would like to take this opportunity to wish all the women out there, especially in and around the Comboni Family, a happy women’s day, celebrated internationally this past Friday, the 8th of March. Did you know that our patron St. Daniel Comboni was a great champion for women? All through his mission work, he was insistent on the importance of including women in evangelisation. On May 5th 1878 (W5117) he wrote: “…My secret, based on my long experience of 21 years, is this: in a mission station in which there are six or seven sisters, I only need to put two missionary priests. Two priests and six sisters in a mission in Central Africa will do more good than a Mission with twelve priests and no sisters. This is a fact.” (Pg. 24, Daniel Comboni, Witness of Holiness and Master of Mission.) ‘Without women missionaries, men would achieve nothing in Africa.’ (Pg. 186, The Spirituality of Daniel Comboni by John Manuel Lozano.) To every female, I hope you feel seen, loved and appreciated. You are wonderfully and fearfully made and you deserve to be celebrated every day!

This past weekend, beginning Friday 8th to Sunday 10th March, we, the Comboni Lay Missionaries – Kenya had our monthly formation meeting. We had a guided recollection at Uganda Martyrs Scholasticate with Fr. Sylvester Hategek’Imana MCCJ. We delved a little more into what our identity is as CLM – adding to what Fr. Maciek taught us last month. My identity and my call/vocation to be a CLM should never be in conflict. My values and my work must always reflect my identity as a CLM. We have been called to be the salt and the light of the world. We must let our light shine before men that they may see our good deeds and praise our Father in heaven. Mathew 5:13-16.

Fr. Sylvester shared this beautiful story with us. Once there was a holy old man who loved to meditate every morning under a large tree on the banks of a river. One morning, after he had finished his meditation, he noticed a large scorpion stuck, fighting helplessly against the strong current of the river. He reached out his hand to help free the Scorpion and immediately the Scorpion stung him. And again, he reached out his hand to help free the scorpion. A young man who was passing by saw this. He asked the old man, “Why risk your life to save such an ugly useless creature?” The holy old man was in much pain having been stung violently, severally. In his pain, he said to the young man, “Friend, because it is in the nature of a scorpion to sting why should I give up my own nature to save?” The world is consumed with different shades of darkness. Our nature as CLM is rooted in Christ. We have been called to be kind, loving, empathetic, selfless, forgiving and so much more. In our daily lives, we get stung – by friends, family, employers etc. We can only find solace in Christ. At no point must we allow it to alter our nature.

We also learnt that love and forgiveness go hand in hand. The greatest commandment is love. Christ is the embodiment of love. That a man should give up his life for the sake of his friends. There is no greater love. And while Jesus was stretched out on the cross, he showed mercy to his persecutors and asked the Lord to ‘forgive them, for they know not what they do.’ Jesus set a great example for us. He expects much of us. Every day we must love more and forgive more. Christ will give us the grace to love the unlovable and forgive those who show no remorse.

This weekend was more special as we had a chance to hear from Fr. Gregor MCCJ, the Provincial of the Comboni Community in South Sudan. He was pleased to learn of our formation program for CLM-K. In Juba, they only have Friends of Comboni. They are yet to have Comboni Lay Missionaries. Christianity is very young in South Sudan. So young that the first generation of Christians in Nuer are still alive. The country is also young. Infrastructure is almost non-existent and illiteracy levels are as high as 70%. It was very grounding to hear of the work the missionaries are doing in South Sudan. Being a missionary there requires that you truly give up everything and offer up your life in service to God. We are very thankful to Fr. Gregor for taking the time to share with us and indulge our curiosity.

We would like to thank the Scholasticate for having us through the weekend. Your environment offers the stillness that one requires when seeking and hearing from our Lord. Thank you for your hospitality that knows no bounds.

We would also like to thank the Comboni priests stationed at Holy Trinity Kariobangi for allowing us to do our apostolate there and at the outstation, on Sunday.

This coming Saturday, March 16th, all Comboni family will gather to commemorate St. Daniel Comboni’s Birthday. St. Daniel Comboni pray for us that we may follow in your footsteps. May we use our time on earth to prepare for heaven.

This fourth week of Lent, let us reflect on what matters most in this life. St. Mother Teresa said, “At the end of life we will not be judged by how many diplomas we have received, how much money we have made, how many great things we have done. We will be judged by ‘I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was naked and you clothed me, I was homeless and you took me in.’”

Remember, the goal is heaven.


Cecilia Nyamu

Comboni Lay Missionary – Kenya