Who we are
The Mothers’ Union was first established in 1918 at All Saints’ Cathedral, but it was initially only open to European ladies. On 4 March 1956, the first African members were enrolled, at a time when the entire country was under the jurisdiction of the Diocese of Mombasa. The enrollment ceremony took place at Mwongoiya Church, which is now within the Anglican Diocese of Mount Kenya South. Mrs. Gladys Beecher, the wife of the first Bishop Leonard Beecher, played a significant role in introducing the Mothers’ Union to African ladies in Kenya. She invited Mrs. Fisher, the wife of the then Archbishop of Canterbury Dr. Fisher, to speak to the combined Mothers’ Union group of Europeans and Africans who had gathered at All Saints’ Cathedral in Nairobi. The Archbishop and Mrs. Fisher later visited Mwongoiya Church to encourage and support the first Mothers’ Union members, and to see where the movement had originated among the African women.
Under the leadership of Mrs. Gladys Beecher, the Mothers’ Union grew from strength to strength. She organized meetings between Kenyan and Tanzanian members of the Mothers’ Union, which were held periodically in either Kenya or Tanzania. When Archbishop Olang’ became the first Archbishop of the Anglican Church of the Province of Kenya (CPK), following the retirement of Archbishop and Mrs. Beecher, his wife, Mrs. Eseri Olang’, became the leader of the Mothers’ Union movement in Kenya. Since then, the wives of ACK Bishops have automatically assumed leadership roles in the Mothers’ Union, while the Bishops themselves take on leadership positions at the Diocesan level.
At St. Mary’s Parish Kabete, the Mother’s Union is a vibrant community comprising members of all ages and spanning various worship services. The primary focus of the Mother’s Union is to promote and nurture Christian care for families.
Founded in 1876 by Mary Sumner, a member of the Church of England parish of Old Alresford, near Winchester, the movement was inspired by her personal experiences as a mother after the birth of her first grandchild. She envisioned a network of mothers from different social backgrounds coming together to support and train each other in motherhood. In Kenya, the movement was established in 1918 by settler women.
At St. Mary’s Parish Kabete, the Mother’s Union actively engages in fellowships, family education, and income-generating projects. These initiatives include activities such as running a tailoring school and providing tents and seats for hire. The Mother’s Union serves as a strong pillar within the cathedral, fostering a sense of community and empowerment among its members.
The Objectives of the Mothers’ Union are;
- To uphold Christ’s teaching on the nature of marriage and to promote its wider understanding.
- To encourage parents to bring up their children in the faith and life of the Church.
- To maintain a worldwide fellowship of Christians united in prayer, worship, and service.
- To promote conditions in society favorable to stable family life and the protection of children.
- To help and comfort those met with adversity.
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