Fr. Joseph N. Namanda, CM

Assistant Provincial Western Province

Namanda inset 223x300How I make Jesus known through my words and actions as a Vincentian Priest.

I am currently entering my 7th year of Priesthood with the Congregation of the Mission. I worked in Tanzania for my deacon internship in a Vincentian remote poor parish for a year. I was ordained a priest and assigned a pastor in a new Vincentian parish in Western Kenya, St. Kizito Parish. After four years as Pastor, I was assigned in our formation house DePaul Centre, Nairobi where I served as a formator and Chief Finance Officer.

This year 2020 after our provincial election, I was named by Fr. Patrick McDevitt, the visitor, to be the Assistant Visitor Western Province. The places I have served in two parishes Tanzania and Kenya and in formation as a formator and Finance Office, I have seen the importance of connecting with people I serve. In serving people I have seen them grow in faith but most importantly I have grown in faith, too. At St. Kizito Parish in Kitale diocese, we had parish programs that connected me with the most abandoned and the needy. The most touching experience was working with the street families of Kitale town. This outreach program provided opportunities to listen to their stories and most importantly many parishioners were part of the program. I came to learn that giving bread and soup to poor people works well but also listening to their stories makes me understand why they are in that situation. This experience has transformed my experience in journeying with the poor. As a young Vincentian priest, I am now learning that my presence to the people I serve opens me up to listening to them and this has made me serve them in s selfless way.

Every day I am called to live my spirituality as a Vincentian priest. Serving people with deep compassion and living in conformity with Jesus Christ in my ministry. The world now is experiencing suffering from the present pandemic and its aftermath, as well as racial discord and debate. The world yearns for healing and renewal. I see green light on the other side of this red light that we are in right now. As a Vincentian I am called to be part of this healing and renewal of mission in a bleeding and wounded world.

I see in Jesus the burning love that fills His heart. As a Vincentian what energizes me is putting that love of Christ in practice and persevering in the same.

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