Some of the widows introduce themselves before the congregation.
The Kenya Defence Forces Anglican Episcopate held a special Church Service for the El Adde attack victims’ widows on Sunday 27th November 2016, at the St Marks Anglican Church, 9 Kenya Rifles, Moi Barracks, Eldoret.
Speaking while he led the service, Lieutenant Colonel Reverend Alfayo K. Lelei, Principal Chaplain at the Anglican Military Episcopate described the day as a historical moment for the church, describing it as a day of true fellowship, as the initiative to bring together the El Adde victims’ widows was one that had not been arrived at before. He thanked the members of the clergy for organising the event, and challenged them to continue coming up with such initiatives in future.
At the same time, Lieutenant Colonel Chalice Oduor, the Recruits Training School Chief Instructor (CI) highlighted that military establishments will continue to support initiatives from the churches, urging the clergy to feel free to ask whenever they need support. Accompanying him was 9 Kenya Rifles Rear Commanding Officer Major Adan Safe, who praised the initiative, and urge all present to feel welcome to the 9KR camp.
One of the widows, Mrs Avril Odede, appreciated the church for continuously supporting them as they dealt with the trauma, mentioning her mental improvement over time, despite the challenges brought by the loss of her husband. She urged the church and KDF families to continue supporting them particularly psychosocially.
The Service that was spearheaded by women leaders from all Anglican churches in the military, under the Mother’s Union umbrella, sought to encourage the widows on pulling on as they adjust with the situation, and donating something to them, with the theme “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the father is this, To visit the father and fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world”.
More than 20 widows who lost their husbands during the January 15th attack were brought together by the service.
Principal Chaplain Anglican Church Lieutenant Colonel Alfayo Lelei leads the El Adde victims’ widows’ service.
Members of St Marks Church Youth entertain the gathering.
9 Kenya Rifles Rear Commanding Officer Major Adan Safe speaks to the congregation, as Principal Chaplain Lieutenant Colonel Alfayo Lelei looks on.
Recruits Training School Chief Instructor Lieutenant Colonel Chalice Oduor presents a gift to Mrs Maurine Achieng, one of the El Adde victims’ widows.