In June 2022, Br. Paul, OFH had the privilege of meeting with Capuchin Bishop George Muthaka of the Diocese of Garissa and Fr. Arnold Shimira, OFM Cap., the Custos of the Capuchin General Custody of Kenya, to discuss the promotion of the Order of Franciscan Hermits (OFH) and building of a future Hermitage Fraternity (monastery) in their country. Their spirit of "Karibu" ("Welcome") was/is very uplifting and they both pledged to pray for and walk with the OFH on our Spiritual Journey in Kenya. The Capuchins are truly our FRANCISCAN BROTHERS!
The Order of Franciscan Hermits was founded by Br. Paul in 2015 through the inspiration of his former Novice Master, Fr. Enda Heffernan, OFM Cap., who was a member of the Capuchin Western America Province. His Spiritual message to, "Go to the Silence... Go to the Silence" and St. Francis' "Rule for Hermitages" has sparked a new generation of Third Order Franciscans to embrace Contemplation and to pray for World Peace. Fr. Enda always yearned to be a Missionary in Africa but never had the opportunity to Serve there, so when Archbishop Philip Anyolo, the Metropolitan Archbishop of Nairobi, invited Br. Paul to Kenya so he could learn more about the OFH, Br. Paul made the trip in honor of Fr. Enda. The OFH will always serve in Africa as part of Fr. Enda's legacy and do our utmost to help where we can.
The Capuchins of Kenya play a critical role within the Church, not only through traditional parish and educational work, but now through video programming on television networks, social media and YouTube. This exciting ministry is known throughout most homes in Kenya, and has sparked an abundance of vocations, but with this new growth comes tremendous financial challenges to carry out such a ministry and provide for the new seminarians.
Fr. Arnold and Br. Paul are asking our OFH Associates, Members and Benefactors if they can assist in the spirit of Fr. Enda through our prayers, sharing of this article with your friends and family, and/or making a financial donation if you are able, directly to the Kenyan Capuchins.
The following are high priority initiatives of the Capuchins in Kenya which are in critical need of donations...
Any further questions can be directed to Fr. Arnold whose contact information is the following:
Fr. Arnold Shirima, OFM Cap.
CAPUCHIN FRANCISCAN FATHERS DEVELOPMENT OFFICE
Box 14413 - 00800
WESTLANDS – NAIROBI KENYA
Cell Phone: +254 721261650
Fr. Enda Heffernan, OFM Cap. was Br. Paul's Novice Master when he was with the Capuchin Franciscans, who was the initial inspiration for the Founding of the Order of Franciscan Hermits. Fr. Enda's main Spiritual Message to his Novices was to, "Go to the Silence... Go to the Silence."
Fr. Enda was born on March 17 (St. Patrick's Day), 1932 in Turner's Cross, Cork City, Ireland and dreamed of being sent to the Missions in Africa as he was studying for the priesthood. He was ordained a priest on May 30, 1957 and was told, "You're going to the Missions" so he asked, "Where am I going?" and they said, "to Pasadena"... "What part of Africa is that in?"... "It's not... it's in California!" Fr. Enda was a Capuchin Franciscan friar for 52 years and died at the age of 69, but never had the chance to Serve as a Missionary in Africa.
Upon the invitation of Archbishop Anyolo, the Metropolitan Archbishop of Nairobi, Br. Paul travelled to Kenya in June 2022, as Archbishop Anyolo wanted to "meet the founder" of our OFH Community. Br. Paul also met with Bishop Muthaka of the Diocese of Garissa, Bishop Rotich of the Diocese of Kericho and Bishop Kimengich of the Diocese of Eldoret, as well as Fr. Arnold Shimira, OFM Cap. - the Capuchin Custos of Kenya. Br. Paul told the story of Fr. Enda wanting to be a Missionary in Africa and that he was there in his Honor. Each of them promised to pray for our Community and welcomed us to promote our Mission and found a Hermitage in Kenya.
To carry on the Missionary work that Fr. Enda yearned to do in Africa, Br. Paul has established the Fr. Enda Heffernan, OFM Cap. Memorial Fund for African Missions. Donations to this Memorial Fund will be allocated specifically to support key missionary projects in Africa.
If you would like to make a donation in Honor of Fr. Enda, please CLICK HERE to make an online donation, or send your check to:
Order of Franciscan Hermits
310 S. Twin Oaks Valley Rd.
San Marcos, CA 92078