Catholic communicators in Kenya have been urged to champion the conservation of nature, taking deliberate efforts to correct errors around climate change.
In his address on the first day of the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Communication Coordinators, Radio Directors, and Managers drawn from Catholic Dioceses in Kenya, Archbishop Anthony Muheria encouraged the fostering of the “family of Catholic media” in the East African nation.
“We must learn to be ambassadors of the message of care for the environment, and the commitment to righting the wrongs of climate change,” Archbishop Muheria said on Tuesday, September 19 at the start of the five-day AGM that has participants taking part in Climate change adaptation training.
The Local Ordinary of the Kenya’s Catholic Archdiocese of Nyeri who doubles as the Chairman of the Commission for Social Communications of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) called for “realistic” approaches in campaigns against climate change, insisting on employing methods that uphold creation as God envisaged it.
In destroying creation and the environment, The Kenyan Catholic Archbishop went on to say, , “we are destroying God’s goodness”.
“Our pitch is not just that of activists or naturalistic theorists,” he told the Catholic Communicators at JJ McCarthy Centre in Nairobi, and further cautioned, “When we speak about nature and the environment, we have to be careful not to go to the other line of personifying nature. Our center of environmental ecology is based on our faith in God and in creation.”
Catholic Communicators in Kenya will have an impact in their messaging against climate change if they foster the spirit of collaboration as faith-based instruments with common goals, the Kenyan member of Opus Dei said at the start of the AGM and training that KCCB’s Commission for Social Communications organized in collaboration with the Media Council of Kenya (MCK).
“We must feel more and more as a family of Catholic media and we have to nurture this feeling and this spirit,” he said, adding, “This is the only way we are going to be more impactful; it is about how we stay together that we are going to be able to fight the challenges that we find ourselves in, and that means helping and holding each other’s hand.”
The Catholic Archbishop continued, “We are not in competition; it is only when we work together that we will have the capacity to move ahead.”
“We must ensure that we keep that spirit of saying, ‘how can I leverage from here’ in order to reach our goal,” he emphasized during the September 19 morning session that had the President of the African region of the World Catholic Association for Communication, SIGNIS Africa, Fr. Walter Chikwendu Ihejirika, in attendance.
MORE IN AFRICA
The 60-year-old Catholic Church leader who has been at the helm of the Kenyan Archdiocese since June 2017 emphasized the need to create synergies by fostering networking opportunities, saying such endeavors among Catholic media in Kenya will result in “tremendous reach and impact”.
Credit: ACI Africa
He went on to urge Catholic Communicators in Kenya to draw inspiration from the Bishops’ voice initiative that he said had a positive impact during the country’s 2022 electioneering period, and foster the spirit of collaboration.
“Our greatest discovery last year was collaboration; the evident impact of selfless and increased collaboration has given all of us confidence and actually made us a very strong media group,” Archbishop Muheria said, adding that the civic education initiative “had a great impact even beyond the Catholic faith.”
While emphasizing the need to create synergies among Catholic Communicators, the Kenyan Archbishop who started his Episcopal Ministry in January 2004 as the Bishop of Kenya’s Embu Diocese cautioned against sidelining the secular media.
“If you don’t have the secular media with you, they are going to work against you; we must align the forces in the same direction,” he said, adding, “We must smarten up; we must be smarter on how we collaborate; we must be intense; we must focus on how we are going and what we intend to do at various points.”
“We must have targets that we focus on to deliver, and we must aim with all intensity to make it happen. We fail as media when we don’t invest to improve,” Archbishop Muheria said on September 19, the first day of the AGM and training of Catholic Communicators from Catholic Dioceses in Kenya.