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Archbishop Justin’s tribute to Archbishop David Gitari (1937-2013)

Monday 30th September 2013

The Archbishop of Canterbury has paid tribute to the former Archbishop of Kenya, the Most Revd David Gitari, who has died at the age of 76.

Archbishop Gitari was the third Archbishop of Kenya, serving from 1997-2002, during which time he was also Bishop of Nairobi. He served previously as Bishop of Mt Kenya East from 1975-1990 and as Bishop of Kirinyaga from 1990-1997. He died at a hospital in Nairobi this afternoon following a long illness.

Archbishop Justin said today: “David Gitari was an Archbishop of great courage who preached the Word of God steadfastly, both in season and out of season. He was a gifted and committed servant of the church who served our Lord Jesus Christ faithfully. He had an enormous vision for development and for social justice and was not afraid to promote change, always reminding the church to retain a critical distance from political power. His concern for prayer and promoting love and harmony has continued to the end of his life through his welcoming of so many to the Philadelphia Guesthouse near Mount Kenya. He will be remembered with much affection and admiration around the Anglican Communion. His family and the whole Anglican Church of Kenya are in our prayers.”

Archbishop Gitari was an outspoken critic of the former President of Kenya, Daniel arap Moi. Archbishop Gitari told Moi in 1997 that his days were numbered and that his kingdom would ‘crumble’ if he refused to repent and accept constitutional changes.

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