Positive Quote For Today

"We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty."— Maya Angelou

A Priest I Will Never Forget

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This is Fr. Deogratias Rwegasira who I shall talk about in the story below.

I was brought up as a Roman Catholic; I just had to because both of my parents were, and still are, Catholics. As a boy growing up in the '90s, I attended mass every Sunday at my hometown Catholic Church where I interacted with nuns, priests, seminarians as well as fellow Christians, old and young alike. Among the priests I interacted with, and one I will never forget, was Fr. Deogratias Rwegasira. Or Fr. Deo in short.

A native of Tanzania, Fr. Deo was posted in the '90s to serve as a chaplain of Kiserian Junior Seminary, a high school that is next to my hometown Catholic Church. It was during his tenure in the junior seminary that I got to know him, for he would often come to our church to preach and teach songs to our church choir. He had a passion for music which was evident in the way he owned an amplifier and a piano keyboard on which he had inscribed his name.

When I began accompanying our church choir on the piano in 1998, I loved to hear the choir sing alongside a piano keyboard hooked to Fr. Deo's amplifier. So I would at times take the initiative of fetching the amplifier from Kiserian Junior Seminary and bring it to our church. I can still picture myself as a boy strutting on an aisle of a fully-packed church, with the bulky amplifier in my hands.

Back in the '90s, I once overheard a friend say that Fr. Deo could play only one Catholic hymn on the piano. I think the friend was right because I once observed Fr. Deo connect a piano keyboard to an electrical socket and then test it by playing the only Catholic hymn he was purported to know.

Although Fr. Deo could only play one Catholic hymn on the piano, he was a superbly gifted musician. He composed a number of songs that he taught our church choir. And wow! His songs were so tuneful and beautifully crafted that they stuck in my memory like glue on paper. To this day, I still find myself crooning them as I got about my daily business.

Besides his musical talent, the other traits of Fr. Deo that endeared him to me were his compassion and kindness. I vividly remember a Sunday afternoon in the late '90s when my friends and I spotted Fr. Deo approaching from a distance. On seeing him, we quickly and cleverly agreed amongst ourselves to yawn as Fr. Deo was passing by to show him we were hungry and arouse his sympathy. The ploy worked like magic because when Fr. Deo saw us yawning, he had compassion on us. He dug into one of his pockets, took out a Ksh. 100 note and gave it to us for buying something to eat.

Excited to receive the money, my friends and I went to our hometown of Kiserian where we bought from a food cafe a type of mandazi we used to call "half-cakes". The half-cakes we purchased were hot and fresh from the kitchen. I started eating my share with gusto but after several bites, the half-cake began to cloy due to too much fat.

Talking of his kindness, Fr. Deo once gently refused to give me a copy of the cassettes that our church choir produced in 1998. I kept nagging him to give me my own cassette to an extent of following him to wherever he went. Despite my persistent nagging, he never lost his cool. With kindness and consideration, he kept turning down my request to give me a cassette until I finally gave up pestering him. He truly practised the grand old biblical virtues of kindness and gentleness that I have seen lacking in some of the Christians I have interacted with over the years.

Because of his musical talkent as well as his compassion and kindness, Fr. Deo was a charismatic and well-liked priest. Some church congregants enjoyed listening to his sermons so much that I noticed how they would smile whenever he was preaching as if they were also listening with their teeth as well. Fr. Deo delivered his sermons with a passion that was rooted in his firm belief in the Bible as the inerrant Word of God.

Why lie, I also liked Fr. Deo. Unfortunately, I got out of touch with him after he left Kiserian Junior Seminary in the late '90s or early 2000s (I can't recall the exact year he left). Sometime in 2014 after someone shared his email address with me, I sent him a message, hoping to reconnect with him. For some reasons I can't tell, he never replied to the two emails I sent him. Last year when I googled his name, I gathered he was posted to a church in the United States where he was eventually granted American citizenship. So America must now be benefiting from his enormous musical talent and his extensive experience as a chaplain.

RECOMMENDATION: If you've enjoyed the above story on a priest I will never forget, you might also enjoy another one on "The Day I Visited My Mentors" which I wrote sometime in 2018. Just click on that link in blue to dive straight into the story.


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How Drug Abuse Can Ruin

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With permission I have extracted this picture-quote from Wordsaregod.com. All rights reserved worldwide.

There is a music skill that I missed learning when I was being taught how to play the piano in the late '90s by a brilliant seminarian named Br. Peter Assenga. That was how to compose songs with a counterpoint harmony. It's a skill that my immediate elder Paddy acquired with admirable proficiency. (If you don't know what a counterpoint harmony is, don't worry; neither did I back in the '90s.)

When I was in Starehe Institute in 2006, I developed a desire to know how to compose songs with a counterpoint harmony. So I approached a guy by the name Kamau to teach me. He readily agreed to tutor me. And soon afterwards, on a warm Sunday afternoon, he sat me down in an empty church for a lesson in music theory.

As Kamau began to teach me that Sunday afternoon, I expected words to flow from his mouth with fluidity - the way Br. Assenga used to speak while teaching us music theory in the late '90s. But guess what! After Kamau uttered his first two or three sentences, he was totally clueless on what to say next. He had to cut the music lesson short. And never again did he sit down with me for another music lesson.

Kamau was a fairly gifted pianist. I had known him since the late '90s when he was in high school at Kiserian Junior Seminary. Some time in the year 2000 when I met him on a street in our hometown of Kiserian, I enthusiastically greeted him by his name. I don't know in what tone I greeted him because before I was able to say anything else to him, he pinched me on my face and instructed me to address him with respect. He embarrassed me by pinching me in front of passers-by but I took his reproach in my stride.

After Kamau finished his high school career at Kiserian Junior Seminary, he was admitted at the Apostles of Jesus Major Seminary in Nairobi to pursue priesthood studies. I once heard that he was inspired to become a priest after he narrowly missed being trampled by a moving bus on a highway in Nairobi - a story I have never corroborated whether it was true.

While studying for priesthood, Kamau began messing up with drugs. The drugs altered his behaviour to a point of making him fall out with a certain priest called Fr. Charles Nyamiti who used to offer music lessons to seminarians at the Apostles of Jesus Major Seminary. Fr. Nyamiti was so perturbed by Kamau's behavior that when my friends and I visited him on one Sunday evening, he cajoled us to stay away from drugs so that we wouldn't end up being like Kamau.

With such kind of substance abuse and behavior change, it's no wonder that Kamau eventually dropped out of his priesthood studies. After dropping out, he landed an opportunity to fly to the United States, the so-called land of freedom and opportunity. I gathered that it was his sister who organized for him to live in America where she resided. And I don't know what happened to Kamau in America because after a while, he was back in Kiserian. My brother Bob Njinju informed me that he was deported to Kenya for messing up with drugs - a side of the story which I tend to believe is true.

On settling back in Kenya, Kamau opened a music school in Kiserian. But the school never flourished either because he was too much into drugs or folks in Kiserian weren't just interested in learning music.

Due to his continued substance abuse, Kamau started exhibiting strange behaviour in my hometown Catholic church - the kind of behaviour that would leave any normal person reeling with guilt. Because I have long since ceased attending mass in the Catholic church, I don't know how the church authorities dealt with Kamau's antics.

One Sunday morning in 2013 or 2014 when I dropped by Kiserian Catholic Church to catch up with old friends, I found Kamau playing a piano keyboard just before a mass was about to begin. I approached him and struck up a conversation with him, in the course of which we had a discourse on drugs. He strongly advised me never to indulge in drugs, especially bhang. And from the way he was speaking with feeling, I could tell he was talking from experience. I took his advice to heart.

Over the past several years, I have been meeting with Kamau in Kiserian every now and then. What I find impressive about him is the way he always greets me warmly, sometimes by my name. He seems to have given up the pride and arrogance that made him pinch me sometime in 2000 as I have narrated to you. Once when I met him walking to Kiserian, I asked him how he found California when he was living in America. "It's very beautiful!" he replied in Kikuyu.

Sometime in 2017 or 2018, I observed Kamau eke out a living by hawking sweets in Kiserian. On one or two occasions, he has begged me for money. Earlier on this year, I spotted him carrying a pile of firewood on his shoulders. And then last Saturday, I saw him talking to himself while throwing his arms in the air as if he was fighting an invisible ghost. Judging by such kind of behaviour, you didn't need to be a genius to figure out that all was not okay with his head.

Kamau is now a walking example of how drugs and substance abuse can ruin our lives. Wonderful opportunities came his way (learning to play the piano, getting admitted at a respected seminary, being granted a visa to live in America) but drugs spoilt him. What a pity!

By the way, I have never learnt how to compose songs with a counterpoint harmony, but I am now content with not possessing the skill since I don't compose music for choir. My focus now is on coming up with songs for solo singing. Adieu!

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Bible Quote

"Always be full of joy in the Lord; I say it again, rejoice! Let everyone see that you are unselfish and considerate in all you do... Don't worry about anything; instead pray about everything; tell God your needs and don't forget to thank Him for His answers. If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand."

~Phillipians 4:4-7 (TLB)

About the Author

Name: Thuita J. Maina
Nationality: Kenyan
Lives in: Kiserian, Rift Valley, Kenya
Mission: To inspire the world to godly living, one person at a time.

Just For Laughs

There was this drunkard named Azoge who loved drinking at Josiah's Bar. On being told a certain Hon. Nanga was flying to America to be conferred a law degree so that he could be admitted to the bar, Azoge replied, "Why fly all the way to America to be admitted to the bar while you can get into Josiah's Bar any time?"

The 7 Deadly Sins

  1. Pride
  2. Envy
  3. Gluttony
  4. Lust
  5. Anger
  6. Greed
  7. Sloth

Author's Note

I am learning to treat life as a journey, not a destination. So I am trying to enjoy each day as I anticipate to fulfill my dreams especially meeting my soulmate and traveling abroad. Tomorrow may never be mine.

Fun Facts

  1. The fear of having no cell-phone service, running out of battery, or losing sight of your phone is called Nomophobia, reportedly affecting 66% of people.
  2. A single Google search needs more computing power than it took to send Apollo 11 to the moon. The Apollo computer was less equipped than a modern toaster.
  3. Besides being some of the biggest names in the tech industry, HP, Apple, Google and Microsoft share another commonality. They all started in garages.
~Extracted from Codingforums.com

Health Tip

So many of us take for granted the wonderful construction of the human body and the workings of its various parts. Some of us even expect it to function efficiently with less than the minimum care and attention. Learn the much you can about your body and how the care of it can help to give you that greatest blessing of all - good health.

Wonders of the Modern World

  1. The Simplon Tunnel
  2. The Sky-scrapers of New York
  3. The Boulder Dam of Colorado
  4. The Panama Canal
  5. The Golden Gate Bridge
  6. The Taj Mahal at Agra in India
  7. The North Sea Oil Drilling Rigs

Great Example for Politicians

"My life in politics was a joy. I loved campaigns and I loved governing. I always tried to keep things moving in the right direction, to give more people a chance to live their dreams, to lift people's spirits, and to bring them together. That's the way I kept score."

~Bill Clinton

Scientific Marvels

  1. Space travel
  2. Heart surgery
  3. Fibre-optics communication
  4. Concorde
  5. Computers & Radios
  6. Anesthetics
  7. The atom bomb

My Supreme Desire

Although I'd like to be rich and famous, my supreme desire is to be radiant: to radiate health, cheerfulness, calm courage and goodwill. I wish to live without hate, guilt, worry, jealousy, cynicism and envy. I wish to be honest, natural, confident, clean in mind and body - ready to say "I do not know" if it be so and to treat all men with kindness - to meet any loss, failure, criticism and rejection unabashed and unafraid.

Greatest American Presidents

  1. Abraham Lincoln
  2. George Washington
  3. Thomas Jefferson
  4. Franklin Roosevelt
  5. Theodore Roosevelt
  6. Woodrow Wilson
  7. Andrew Jackson

Making Peace With the Past

"Dwell not on your past. Use it to illustrate a point, then leave it behind. Nothing really matters except what you do now in this instant of time. From this moment onwards you can be an entirely different person, filled with love and understanding, ready with an outstretched hand, uplifted and positive in every thought and deed."

~Eileen Caddy

Toughest Colleges to Get Into

  1. MIT
  2. Princeton
  3. Harvard
  4. Yale
  5. Stanford
  6. Brown
  7. Columbia

Why You Should Trust God

"Men and women who turn their lives over to God will find out that He can make a lot more out of their lives than they can. He will deepen their joys, expand their vision, quicken their minds, strengthen their muscles, lift their spirits, multiply their blessings, increase their opportunities and pour out peace."

~Ezra Taft Benson

The 7 Greatest Scientists

  1. Albert Einstein
  2. Isaac Newton
  3. Galileo Galilei
  4. Nikola Tesla
  5. Aristotle
  6. Archimedes
  7. Charles Darwin

You Matter

"Always be yourself. Never try to hide who you are. The only shame is to have shame. Always stand up for what you believe in. Always question what other people tell you. Never regret the past; it's a waste of time. There's a reason for everything. Every mistake, every moment of weakness, every terrible thing that has happened to you, grow from it. The only way you can ever get the respect of others is when you show them that you respect yourself and most importantly, do your thing and never apologize for being you."


The Most Industrialized Nations

  1. The United States
  2. Japan
  3. Germany
  4. France
  5. United Kingdom
  6. Italy
  7. Canada

Keys to Success

"...in his effort to withstand temptation, to economize, to exercise thrift, to disregard the superficial for the real - the shadow for the substance; to be great yet small, in his effort to be patient in the laying of a firm foundation; to so grow in skill and knowledge that he shall place his services in demand by reason of his intrinsic and superior worth. This is the key that unlocks every door of opportunity, and all others fail."

~Booker T. Washington

The 7 Social Sins

  1. Politics without principle
  2. Wealth without work
  3. Pleasure without conscience
  4. Knowledge without character
  5. Commerce without morality
  6. Worship without sacrifice
  7. Science without humanity

Cherish What You Love

"Cherish your visions, cherish your ideals, cherish the music that stirs in your heart, the beauty that forms in your mind, the loveliness that drapes your purest thoughts - for out of them will grow all heavenly environment, of these if you but remain true to them, your world will at last be built."~James Allen

The World's Largest Cities

  1. London in England
  2. New York in the United States
  3. Tokyo in Japan
  4. Berlin in Germany
  5. Chicago in the United States
  6. Shanghai in China
  7. Paris in France

Benefits of Optimism

"In terms of success, optimistic people out perform their pessimistic colleagues. Research shows that they are consistently promoted higher and make more money while working fewer hours than those who think pessimistically. Optimists also contribute more significantly to social progress. It is the optimists who start and run successful companies, who win elections and carry out reforms, and who make breakthroughs in the realms of science and technology."

~Pepe Minambo

The World's Greatest Lakes

  1. Caspian Sea in the Commonwealth of Independent States, C.I.S. (formerly U.S.S.R)
  2. Lake Superior in North America
  3. Victoria Nyanza in Central Africa
  4. Aral Sea in C.I.S.
  5. Lake Huron in North America
  6. Lake Michigan in North America

Demonstrating His Love

"Take your communication for instance - the way you address others. It ought to be with loving, gracious and edifying words. Never talk people down. Never use words that hurt and demean people. Communicate excellently with others without destroying their self-image or making them feel sorry for themselves. Talk to people in a way that they never forget the excellence of your words, the love and grace of Christ that you communicated. It's how God wants us to love."

~Dr. Chris Oyakhilome

World's Longest Rivers

  1. Missouri-Mississipi (U.S.)
  2. Amazon (Brazil)
  3. Nile (Egypt)
  4. Yangtse (China)
  5. Lena (Russia)
  6. Zaire (Central Africa)
  7. Niger (West Africa)