Pope Francis (left) blesses a rosary he gave to the former postulator of the Cause of beatification of Blessed Sister Irene Stefani Nyaatha, Father Peter Githinji (right) of Nyeri Catholic Archdiocese during his last visit to the Vatican. Catholic faithful are preparing for Blessed Sister Irene Nyaatha's memorial feast which Pope Francis set for October 31. Pope Francis is also expected in Kenya next month. Photo by JOB WERU/Standard

Pope Francis (left) blesses a rosary he gave to the former postulator of the Cause of beatification of Blessed Sister Irene Stefani Nyaatha, Father Peter Githinji (right) of Nyeri Catholic Archdiocese during his last visit to the Vatican. Catholic faithful are preparing for Blessed Sister Irene Nyaatha?s memorial feast which Pope Francis set for October 31. Pope Francis is also expected in Kenya next month. Photo by JOB WERU/Standard

The feast, which was announced in a Papal Decree that converted the late nun to Blessed will be held on October 31 this year at Mathari Catholic Mission Complex.

The Memorial feast coincides with the day Blessed Sister Nyaatha was born-at Info in Italy.

The event is scheduled to attract Catholic faithful from all over the world, while the organisers said invitations have been sent to all Catholic Bishops in the country.

Father Peter Githinji, the former postulator of the Cause of the Beatification in Kenya said the Memorial feast will be preceded by a night vigil service that will be held at our Lady of Consolata Catholic Cathedral in Nyeri.

?We will also have a nine-day Novena dedicated to Blessed Nyaatha between October 22 and October 30 and on the evening of October 30, all faithful will converge at Our Lady of Consolata Cathedral for a night vigil until the following day when they will head to Mathari Complex for the main celebrations,? said Fr Githinji.

Youths from all churches in the Archdiocese of Nyeri will be leading the animation during the night vigil.

Early this month, Consolata Sisters mounted a monstrance containing a relic of the Blessed Nyaatha at Our Lady of Divine Providence Church in Gikondi, where Sister Nyaatha served before her death in 1930.

Last month, Nyeri leaders led by Governor Nderitu Gachagua and MPs Esther Murugi (Nyeri Town) and Mary Wambui (Othaya) asked the government to extend an invitation to Pope Francis to visit Nyeri.

Blessed Nyaatha was beatified on May 23 this year at an event held at Dedan Kimathi University of Technology (DeKUT) in Nyeri.

Her relics are preserved in a glass and bullet proof sarcophagus which was installed at Our Lady of Consolata Catholic Cathedral in Nyeri town.

?We are asking Pope Francis to visit Nyeri during his November tour of the country so that he can also visit the shrine where Nyaatha?s remains are preserved,? said Wambui.

Pope Francis is expected in the country between 25 and 27 this year and it is not yet clear whether he will include a visit to Nyeri in his itinerary.

Gachagua said the County Government will send a formal invitation to the Papacy.

?On May we hosted thousands of Catholic Church faithful. We are a hub of the Catholic Church in Kenya, thanks to Blessed Sister Nyaatha and we will send a formal invitation to the Papacy so that the Pope can visit Nyeri in his November tour,? said Gachagua.

By Job Weru, The Standard

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