Marriage Encounter, a Catholic movement that fosters Christian marriage, has embarked on a plan to establish a national center for its activities in the town of Thika, in Kenya.

The proposed center, to be known as Love Gardens, is estimated to cost Ksh 100 Million (USD 1.16 million) upon its completion. It will be located in the archdiocese of Nairobi. Performing the ground breaking and blessing ceremony for the proposed project on May 27th, Cardinal John Njue thanked the members of the Movement for their decision to set up the center. He said this will go a long way in promoting familes, in particular love and understanding between couples. “Through the many marriage encounters the centre will undertake for its members, love between the couples will improve the family life,” said the Cardinal.

The Cardinal stressed that the family is central in building a strong Church and a stable society. “The family,” he added, “was today being faced with many challenges.”

“Gay marriages, lesbianism, abortion and homosexuality will definitely impact negatively on the family; hence the Church will continue to educate and advocate for strong families,” emphasized the Cardinal. “We shall do what it takes to ensure that your dreams on this project are fully realized,” assured Cardinal Njue as he delivered the homily during the colorful ceremony.

Speaking on behalf of the members of the Movement, Francis Ndolo, flanked by his wife, Lucy, said the Movement was fast gaining momentum among the Catholic couples in the country. He said the project will be carried out in phases. “The first phase will involve the construction of Saint Valentine Church, next to the place where the proposed Centre (Love Gardens) will be built and will also include a home for the aged,” added Mr Ndolo, who together with his wife forms part of the national ecclesial team of the Movement alongside Fr. Joseph Njoroge. The Movement was introduced in the country by Cardinal Maurice Otunga in 1978.



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