Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA) graduands have been called upon to use their academic knowledge to champion the conservation of the environment.
During his message on Friday, October 28 on the occasion of the institution’s 41st graduation ceremony, Bishop Paul Kariuki Njiru who chairs CUEA Council said, “I challenge our dear graduands to use the academic professional knowledge they have acquired in CUEA to champion the conservation of environment as we continue to grow economically, socially, ethically and politically.”
“The world today is facing climate-related environmental challenges; we have and continue to experience prolonged drought in parts of Africa and Europe,” Bishop Kariuki said, and added, “As we look at expanding opportunities of growth through quality education and training, let us ensure that we focus on our environment.”
The Local Ordinary of Kenya’s Embu Diocese who also chairs the Commission for Education and Religious Education (CERE) of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) said that while there seems to a focus on the growth of education, the issue of environment should not be forgotten.
He went on to reflect on Pope Francis’ call to take care of the mother earth and said that there is a need to “secure our growth in the areas of education and research towards saving our planet or the mother earth.”
CUEA is a private Catholic institution founded in 1984 by the Association of Member Episcopal Conferences in Eastern Africa (AMECEA). The university that is based in Kenya is a regional institution that recruits students from both central and Eastern Africa.
In his message, Bishop Kariuki said the fact that the theme of the 20th Plenary assembly of AMECEA was on “Environmental Impact on Integral Human Development” shows the Church’s seriousness on the issue of the environment.
The Catholic Church is working hard to achieve the United Nations’(UN) 17 sustainable development goals, he said, and added, “We need to particularly focus on ensuring that we preserve the environment for our children and the future heritage. This is a spirit that is already captured in Millennial goals.”
He also urged the CUEA graduands to use the skills they have attained for the common good.
“Today you will be given the power to read and to write; use the expertise you have acquired for the common good of everyone,” the Bishop who has been at the helm of Kenya’s Embu Diocese since his Episcopal Ordination in July 2009 said.
He went on, addressing CUEA graduands, “Utilize the powers accorded to you with righteousness and decorum and always let the Catholic values that you have received in CUEA shine through you as a light tower.”
The 59-year-old Catholic Church leader cautioned the graduands against disregarding the wisdom of elders, parents, sponsors, guardians, grandparents and the people outside the university.