On Thursday, 15th November, at 2AM a Kenyan Jesuit, Fr. Victor-Luke Odhiambo, 62, was killed during the attack against the Jesuit community in Cueibet, South Sudan. Three other members of the community, who were already asleep during the incident, are reported safe. A letter with condolences was addressed to the Eastern Africa Provincial, Fr. Joseph Oduor Afulo, by the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Fr. Arturo Sosa.
Fr. Victor-Luke, SJ was born on 20th January 1956, entered the Society on 4th July 1978, and was ordained a priest on 22nd August 1987. He took his final vows on 30th May 1993. At the time of the attack he held positions of the Principal of Mazzolari Teachers’ College (MTC) and the acting Superior of the Community (since 30th January 2017). He had worked in South Sudan for approximately 10 years before this incident. Prior that he served in the Starehe Boys Centre in Nairobi, Kenya, and in Loyola High School in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania.
Fr. General pays tribute to Jesuit murdered in South Sudan
November 15th, 2018
Dear Father Provincial, P.C.,
It is with great pain that I received the sad news of the attack of our companions in Cueibet and the violent death of Fr. Victor-Luke Odhiambo, S.J., the Principal of Mazzolari Teachers’ College (MTC) and Vice-Superior of the community.
Father Victor Luke Odhiambo leaves a name, not only in South Sudan as the first Jesuit to die at the service of its people, but in the whole of Eastern Africa as a teacher of thousands of students in the Starehe Boys Centre in Nairobi-Kenya and in Loyola High School in Dar Es Salaam-Tanzania.
He was a very courageous man, intelligent, caring, creative administrator and above all a believer in the value of education. He was not afraid of venturing into the unknown even into the most dangerous of places once he was convinced it was the Lord’s mission. His example of selfless dedication as Headmaster and Principal remains a challenge to many of our younger brothers in the Society of Jesus. He is a light, which has been extinguished, after enlightening other lights. Like a grain of wheat that dies in order to bear much fruit. And this is our consolation.
Kindly assure all our companions especially those in South Sudan my closeness and prayers. Fr. Odhiambo gave his life for the people, the sons and daughters of God, following Jesus’ example. Our merciful Father will receive him with an open heart. Let us also pray for those who attacked the college premises and killed Father Victor and for those who promote violence, may the Lord change their hearts.
Please do pass on my sincere condolences to all the members of your province and to his biological family, with the assurance of my prayers that the Lord grant them consolation. May the soul of our brother Victor rest in God’s peace and eternal happiness.
Fraternally yours in Christ,
Arturo Sosa, S.J.
*For peace in South Sudan
*For the repose of the soul of Fr. Victor-Luke Odhiambo
*For all those affected by violence
Lord Hear us,
Lord graciously hear us.