One year after the death of Jesuit Father Aquiline Tarimo, January 20, 2020, was a day set aside to commemorate his life. This was held at the campus of Hekima University College. In the presence of the Jesuits from the province of East Africa, students and close collaborators of the Society of Jesus, Father Agbonkhianmeghe Orobator SJ, president of the Jesuit Conference of Africa and Madagascar (JCAM), presided, in the university chapel, a Eucharistic celebration for the life and heritage of the man he called "warrior". A tree was also planted in his honor in the university courtyard.
By Cedric Mouzou SJ- Nairobi (Kenya)
The emotion was palpable on January 20th in the chapel of Hekima University College, during the Eucharistic celebration in honor of Fr Tarimo, who at one time was a principal of the university. The homily was said by Father Gaspard Sunhwa SJ, professor of moral theology. In a vibrant homily, full of emotion and humor, Father Sunhwa paid tribute to a friend and promoter, a man of faith, a disciplined researcher, a man who had a passion for the continent.
A man of deep faith, disciplined and passionate about Africa.
Father Gaspard Sunhwa traced the thread of the sinister evening when Fr Tarimo went to be with the Lord in his homily. “The day was January 09, 2019, when Father Aquiline S. Tarimo SJ, would die in the Jesuit spiritual center Mwangaza of Nairobi. It was 2 o'clock in the morning. A death that not only saddened me but also brought me joy" said Father Sunhwa. But above all, he added, we can remember that Father Tarimo was a man of deep faith. A deep faith in God that allowed him to face his illness and his pain with admirable resilience. On the evening of his life, he knew how to accept his death. An excellent teacher and prolific writer, Father Tarimo was not only a man of deep faith but also a disciplined scholar who did not tolerate laziness or intellectual mediocrity. A Man of few words, he made punctuality his leitmotif. In a world where many have chosen to embrace the inculturation of mediocrity, said Father Sunhwa, Father Tarimo has not tolerated mediocrity.
In his homily, Father Sunhwa mentioned a fierce fighter for social justice, passionate about the African continent. This passion, he invited to discover it especially in his doctoral dissertation on Human Rights. Tarimo, said Father Gaspard, was a man who wanted good governance in Africa, free from all forms of corruption. Finally, Father Sunhwa paid tribute to a man, friend of the poor who knew how to let himself be touched by the marginalized, and who knew how to be attentive to the needs of others.
At the end of the Eucharistic celebration, everyone wanted to be present at the tree planting ceremony in honor of Father Tarimo. Father Orobator and Father Sunhwa planted the tree in the courtyard of Hekima College near the student canteen, a canteen that bears the name of the illustrious departed.
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