A new model of pastoral care: resources from Luo widows in Kisumu Archdiocese

Ojore, Aloys O. (2017) A new model of pastoral care: resources from Luo widows in Kisumu Archdiocese. Doctoral thesis, Anglia Ruskin University.

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This thesis discusses the levirate custom also known as widow inheritance among the Luo of Western Kenya. Persistent observance of the practice by the Luo and its condemnation by the Catholic Church has led to a pastoral dilemma for the Catholic widows in the Archdiocese of Kisumu. Those who reject it are ostracized by the community while those who embrace it are excluded by the Church. This dilemma has remained unresolved for over 115 years since the arrival of Catholicism among the Luo. I have addressed the dilemma in this study. I used a multi-mixed research methods (quantitative and qualitative) to examine the perceptions of the Luo widows regarding the custom. However, the research relied heavily on qualitative methods through the use of focus group discussions, mixed discussion group, narrative techniques and Delphi. The study made use of the pastoral cycle paradigm to facilitate dialogue among the stakeholders in the levirate debate. The findings from the survey showed that a majority of the participants wanted the levirate custom abolished, and widows involved in Church ministries. However, a significant minority wanted it retained and asked the Catholic Church to recognise certain levirate unions. The responses from the focus groups, mixed discussion group and Delphi method, was that the levirate custom as currently practiced, is retrogressive and grossly violates the rights of widows and needs to be stopped. They called upon the government to intervene and protect widows against the abuses. However, the Catholic widows in levirate unions want the Catholic Church to re-think her stand on marriage in the face of diverse human cultures in a rapidly changing world. The desire by widows to be included in Church ministries, pointed to the need for a new model of pastoral care. I have developed a model of widowhood ministry in which Luo widows see Jesus Christ as their ideal husband. The model emerged from the narratives and resources of widows, and from the traditional models of widow care in the Judeo-Christian traditions.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Keywords: tabood women, inherited and excluded, wife of the dead, levirate union, outcasts from church
Faculty: Theses from Anglia Ruskin University
Depositing User: Melissa Campey
Date Deposited: 05 Sep 2017 08:23
Last Modified: 09 Sep 2021 18:59
URI: https://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/702165

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